Washington, D.C. Project

Having established a marked record of social impact in Bosnia and Herzegovina, the War Childhood Museum has launched its international expansion, by which it will replicate its documentation practices for the experiences of people whose childhoods were or continue to be affected by conflicts elsewhere.

The Washington metropolitan area has become a second home for thousands of refugees and migrants over the years, while its concentration of major inter‐governmental and non‐governmental actors remains unrivaled. These organizations play an outsized role in supporting refugees both domestically and abroad. As such, Washington, D.C. provides a unique environment for the expansion of the War Childhood Museum’s research and exhibition activities.

The War Childhood Museum’s activities in Washington, D.C. will occur in two stages. The research stage entails collecting memories and objects from D.C.‐area residents whose own childhoods have been affected by conflict. Affected populations include not only child survivors of war, but also people who experienced war secondhand (e.g., by seeing a parent off to the battlefield, being injured by a landmine after the signing of a peace agreement, living with a loved one who suffers from PTSD after war and so on). In the next stage, we will organize a temporary exhibition and other programming in the Washington, D.C metro area.

The projected social impact of the War Childhood Museum’s D.C. project is two‐fold:

  • To help survivors to better understand and more easily cope with their experiences by:
  1. Providing them with an opportunity to share and exchange their personal stories, as both sharing and listening to other people’s stories may support their healing processes
  2. Enabling them to connect with others who have had similar experiences, which could help them feel less alienated and increase their sense of belonging to a greater community
  • To raise awareness among Washington, D.C. residents about the existence of people in their own communities whose childhoods have been affected by war

The first WCM exhibition in Washington, D.C. is scheduled for early 2019.


Allison Hartley, D.C. Project Coordinator,

Jasminko Halilović, WCM Founder,



Educator’s Institute for Human Rights

Museum Studies Program, George Washington University