In May 2014 the Balkans were hit with floods that became the worst regional natural disaster in decades, leaving 51 dead and over 90,000 displaced. Serbia was struck particularly hard with 32,000 people evacuated from their homes and serious damage to the country's infrastructure. Months after the disaster, there is still massive amounts of work to be done. Currently, $1.2 million raised by the Foundation is being implemented in flood relief projects, helping 4,500 people across the country.
In Obrenovac, the area most heavily affected by the flooding, every house was evacuated. The water destroyed all personal belongings and severely damaged houses' infrastructure. Citizens of Obrenovac now live in old military barracks turned into temporary shelters which have extremely poor conditions with no heat or running water. The families must be able to return to their homes before winter and will need the furniture and appliances necessary for living.
The Foundation focuses on helping the most vulnerable families in the region, those with elderly or disabled members. We raised $55,000 which has been spent on building materials for 10 families in Obrenovac, and the reconstruction of houses has begun. Once rebuilt however, these homes will remain empty of furniture, electricity, heating and necessary appliances. These donations will go towards refurnishing and refurbishing these families' homes, making them livable once again.
Providing money for furniture and appliances such as refrigerators, stoves and water heaters will enable the families, 10 in total, to move out of the poor conditions of the collective centers and back into houses fit for living, an urgent need before winter sets in. The donations will allow them to save some of their own money, which must be spent on replacing all of their personal belongings, and will help them rebuild their lives and move forward from this disaster.