Ljubljana awarded its highest recognitions
The culmination of the celebrations on 9 May, the Ljubljana City Holiday, was the Gala Session of the City Council of the City of Ljubljana where Mayor Zoran Janković presented the highest recognitions of the City of Ljubljana.
The title Honorary Citizen of Ljubljana was awarded to Anita Ogulin, university graduated journalist active for forty years in the field of social security and charitableness.
When the crisis started a decade ago we would have had to make up »Aunt Anita« had she not already been there at the Association of Friends of Youth Moste qualified and ready to develop efficient support models for those in need and web a network for their operation. Used to work since her childhood, for her it was natural to help her weaker peers and the disabled adults. She evolved as a volunteer – and she remained a volunteer despite the routinely longer working hours and her role as a president. Many of her projects were successful, but her key achievement is the sponsorship project Botrstvo – a stronger and more lasting connection between donors, the media and the unprivileged with which we are striving to balance out opportunities for children from financially weaker families. The title Honorary Citizen is not only an acknowledgement and expression of gratitude of all who Anita Ogulin has directly and indirectly helped, but also a validation of hope and confidence that no one will be left alone and forgotten.
The title Honorary Citizen of Ljubljana was awarded to Dr Janez Kocijančič, longstanding sports official, President of the Olympic Committee of Slovenia ever since its establishment and the President of European Olympic Committees.
The recipient of the title is an all-around socially engaged person of broad views, a theoretician and a practical man, an advocate for the respect of human dignity. After his successful work in politics and the economy he devoted himself principally to sports and physical culture. The undeniable achievements in the Slovenian top-class sports at the national and international level are closely connected to his efforts in organising and harmonising sports interests, ambitions and opportunities, as well as to promoting, guiding and active networking. Winning the election for the President of European Olympic Committees is recognition of his consistent adherence to the principles of the Olympic spirit, peace and cooperation between nations. It is also highlighting the inseparable connection between sports and spiritual health which is an important element for confident social and professional ascertainment, and at the same time one of the fundamental commitments and policies of the Slovenian capital. In his widely branched network of most prominent people in Olympic and global sports he always proudly says he was born and still lives in the capital of the Republic of Slovenia, Ljubljana, the Hero City.
The Awards of the City of Ljubljana for 2018 were presented to
The university graduated literary comparativist has dedicated almost his entire professional life to being a principal. In 32 years under his leadership the Prule Primary School has developed into an institution with a particular emphasis on ethical values, tolerance and dialogue between all those who live in work there. In his effort to provide quality pedagogical work he focused especially on students with learning weaknesses and ensured good conditions for achieving results in the area of learning, spots and culture. As one of the most prominent Slovenian principals he is known for his and strong positions on the educational system and educational policy.
Since the very beginning the award winner has dedicated his work to culture and in the eyes of the broader public he is considered one of the most important cultural managers, serving ever since 1982 as the general director of the main Slovenian cultural and congress centre – Cankarjev dom. During his leadership the most renowned names among European and global artists have performed there, but also daring artists still striving for recognition. With his arguments and expertise he has always supported his institution and its employees, and as an active citizen he continues to contribute to the debate on culture and cultural policy.
Ten years ago, the humanist and internationally renowned expert on safe mobility founded the Institute Safe Way for helping and supporting victims of traffic accidents. Under his leadership the institute is a constructive and well-intentioned partner of the City of Ljubljana as its work noticeably contributes to traffic safety in our city: it offered and provided psychosocial assistance to over 3500 people marked by traffic accidents, and their preventive programmes on safe mobility are raising awareness especially among children and the youth. The award winner’s dedicated work in different international projects is also resounding, earning him the position of the vice president of the European Federation of Road Traffic Victims.
The longstanding editor of the newsletter Ljubljana invested a lot of love and a broad scope of knowledge in it. Under her attentive and reasoned leadership it developed into a precise barometer of life in the capital – it presented an abundance of achievements in the social, artistic and scientific area, it also detected problems in our common lives and sought solutions for them. The intellectual with broad views and high ethical standards didn’t only leave a mark on the newsletter Ljubljana with her lucid spirit and optimistic energy, but also on the culture of our coexistence.
Prof Dr Milan Žvan
The award winner is a professor, active in pedagogical, journalistic and scientific fields in sports, especially in skiing. Since 2007 he has been serving as the Dean of the Faculty of Sports, the centre of sports knowledge and co-creator of successes in Slovenian sports. Within the framework of the Bologna study reform he led the staffing and organisational modernisation of the Faculty of Sports and its integration into relevant international professional associations. As the longstanding president of the Sports Association of the University of Ljubljana he has significantly contributed to the development of university competitive sports. And so in 2009 the University of Ljubljana was declared the best European university of the decade with regards to its results in sports.
The Awards of the City of Ljubljana for 2018 were presented to
Ljubo Baša has been a firefighter for over 55 years. In his home Fire Brigade Ljubljana – Rudnik he has been promoted to the 2nd level fire officer and completed many practical courses: for an engineer, commander, rescuer, instructor and medical assistant. Until 2011 he served as the president of the brigade and now he is the vice president. As an active member of the Joint Civil Protection Detachment he assisted in numerous larger scale rescues, among others during the war for Slovenia and the heavy flood in Ljubljana. For his selfless acts he has received numerous recognitions of the Fire Fighting Association Ljubljana and the Fire Fighting Association of Slovenia as well as the Civil Protection.
Janez Bončina Benč
The prolific artist who came on the music scene already in the bygone year of 1965 laid the foundations of Slovenian pop rock with the group Mladi levi (Young Lions). He collaborated with renowned music groups, among them The Generals, Srce (Heart) and September. In the seventies he performed with them everywhere from the Soviet Union to the USA. His »strong voice« also reached world renowned stars; in the eighties he performed with Tina Turner and in 2003 at Tivoli Hall with the iconic Deep Purple. After five decades of creating he is still active – and current. Many of his songs are already folk songs, among them Zlata obala (Golden Shore), Ritem srca (Rhythm of the Heart), Ta noč je moja (The Night is Mine) and Maja z biseri (Maja with Pearls).
The University Botanic Gardens Ljubljana
It was established 208 years ago under the name the Garden of Native Flora; it is the oldest cultural, scientific and educational institution continuously operating in Slovenia. In 1920, when it became part of the University in Ljubljana, it was thoroughly renovated. Now it spans over 2400 m2, and its dedicated leader Jože Bavcon is responsible not only for its adequate spatial expansion but also for the interesting enrichment of its contents. For many citizens and visitors the garden is an indispensable area for relaxation or taking walks, it also plays an important role in educating the wider public and running socially beneficial projects.
At the 11th International Olympiad on Astronomy and Astrophysics last year, the not even 18 year old student at the University of Nova Gorica received the highest number of points among over 200 competitors from around the world making him the first Slovenian absolute winner at any knowledge Olympiad in natural sciences. The same year he won the gold medal at the Olympics in Physics. He started amazing people as a five-year old when he assembled and programmed a play kit washing machine. For his success the inquisitive young man distinguished by visionariness, perseverance, modesty and critical thinking was also awarded the Apple of Inspiration by the President of the Republic of Slovenia.
Feodor – Fedja Lužovec
During World War II comrade Feodor – Fedja Lužovec was defending Sarajevo as a partisan; he was seriously injured in a battle in 1945. Since his return to Ljubljana he has been active in the Union of the Associations for the Values of the National Liberation Movement of Slovenia. During his mandate the book titled Spomini v kamen vklesani (Memories Carved in Stone) on the topic of the national liberation struggle memorial plaques and monuments in the area of the District Community Posavje was published with the purpose of disseminating general knowledge about our recent history. Now the honorary and before that for many years the actual president of the local organisation of the Union left his signature on the organisation and numerous memorial celebrations and commemorations.
City Association of Retirees Ljubljana
The association, which last year celebrated its 40th anniversary, was the first in the area of Slovenia to respond to the historical demographic changes with addressing the period of learning, working, creating and resting to all generations. Based on contemporary guidelines for active, healthy and fulfilling aging in the environment of intergenerational symbiosis it established the first Day Activity Centre. Now there are seven of them providing a network of services in the field of counselling, information, entertainment, communication and integration into the environment. They are an indispensable part of the city panorama connecting over 200 volunteers and more than 2000 elderly people.
Dr Marjan Sedej
After the only stationary hospice in Slovenia closed its doors, Dr Marjan Sedej recognised the need for such a facility where an interdisciplinary group of experts provides comprehensive hospice palliative care for the terminally ill. For two years already, the Ljubhospice House under the patronage of the Ljubljana Pharmacy has been providing a safe space with conditions for the best possible support offered to people in their last period of life and in the time of grieving, and it is helping to change the social culture with regard to death and dying. Dr Sedej believes everybody has the right to a dignified end, and that is why he is struggling for the Ljubhospice House to continue providing free care.