Building a Better Future: EU’s Support to Social Housing and Inclusion in Serbia

Building a Better Future: EU’s Support to Social Housing and Inclusion in Serbia2023-11-13T17:20:53+02:00

In a bold move towards fostering social inclusion and addressing housing challenges, the European Union’s Support to Social Housing and Active Inclusion Programme (EU SHAI) is making a significant impact in Serbia. With a dedicated budget of 27 million euros under the Instrument for Pre-accession Assistance (IPA) 2018, and executed by the United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS), this transformative initiative is set to change the lives of Serbia’s most vulnerable populations.

The overarching objective of the EU SHAI program is clear: to contribute to increased social inclusion, allowing individuals facing poverty and social exclusion to live with dignity and actively participate in society. The purpose is deeply rooted in the need to improve living conditions sustainably for those in inadequate or insecure housing, promoting better inclusion across the country.

Working in tandem with key ministries, including the Ministry for Construction, Transport, and Infrastructure, the Ministry of Labour, Employment, Veterans, and Social Affairs, and the Ministry of European Integration, the program extends its reach to vulnerable groups, including the Roma community, disadvantaged women, youth in/leaving care, persons with disabilities, and others facing inadequate housing conditions.

The program focuses on empowering institutions, authorities, and organizations involved in housing and active inclusion services. This ensures effective and gender-responsive planning and implementation. A crucial aspect of the program is delivering sustainable housing solutions for the most vulnerable. This directly addresses the immediate needs of individuals and families in distress. Beyond housing, the program is committed to offering job, social, education, and health care services. These complementary measures contribute to a holistic approach to uplift those in need.

The EU SHAI program doesn’t stop at individual benefits. It extends its positive influence to national institutions, local self-governments, and social inclusion service providers in the public and civil society sectors. By aligning with international frameworks, the program contributes to Serbia meeting the European Union accession criteria under Chapters 19 and 23, addressing social inclusion and fundamental rights, respectively. It’s a powerful step towards achieving the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

The EU SHAI program is not just about addressing current challenges; it’s a commitment to building a future where everyone in Serbia has the opportunity to thrive. As the program unfolds, it stands as a testament to the EU’s dedication to supporting Serbia on its journey towards international standards and a more inclusive and dignified future for its citizens.


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