The European Union Assistance for Flood Relief in Serbia is a Programme consisted from five projects aiming to restore living conditions in 24 local self-governments which were hardest affected by the floods in May 2014.
The heavy rainfall and flooding have left tremendous consequences in around 100 local self-governments across Serbia. There were 51 casualties, around 32,000 people were evacuated from their homes and around 5,000 people were placed in temporary shelters in camps established by the Government of Serbia and the Serbian Red Cross.
The Government reported that more than 2,260 buildings were flooded, over 1,800 damaged, more than 30,000 households left without electricity. In the most severely affected municipalities the floods damaged 945 kilometres of main, regional and local roads. Thirty bridges were demolished and 50 damaged on categorized roads, while there are 200 bridges that were affected on municipal or uncategorized roads.
At least 14 health facilities were damaged or destroyed, while the stocks, equipment and medications were lost. The education of children was interrupted in the affected area due to the flooding of schools and kindergartens. Since the timing of the flood coincided with high value harvest for early season greenhouse crops, production losses occurred particularly in the agricultural crops sub-sector, affecting some 33,000 farmers.
The European Union has earmarked €30 million from its IPA funds for flood relief assistance to Serbia, through the Programme which will last until end of July 2015.
The Programme envisages: – construction of 137 new homes – reconstruction of 814 damaged houses – provision of furniture and appliances for 819 households – reconstruction of up to 30 public institutions – construction of one road – revival of economy and agriculture by providing income generating activities to 448 small and micro businesses and agricultural assistance to 15,000 agricultural households.
Five partners, in cooperation with the Government of Serbia’s Office for Flood Affected Areas Assistance and Recovery, are implementing the Programme – United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS), the United Nations Organisation for Food and Agriculture (FAO), Hilfe zur Selbsthilfe e.V (Help), Arbeiter-Samariter-Bund Deutschland e.V (ASB) and the Danish Refugee Council (DRC).
The beneficiaries of this Programme are citizens in 24 local self-governments largest affected by the floods: Bajina Bašta, Valjevo, Varvarin, Velika Plana, Jagodina, Kosjerić, Koceljeva, Kragujevac, Kraljevo, Lazarevac, Loznica, Ljubovija, Mali Zvornik, Obrenovac, Osečina, Paraćin, Svilajnac, Smederevska Palanka, Trstenik, Ub, Čačak, Šabac and Šid. The intervention was expanded to additional seven local self-governments: Ruma, Smederevo, Malo Crniće, Mionica, Lajkovac, Gornji Milanovac and Požega where new houses are being constructed.
Already by the end of 2014, 23 new houses in Obrenovac, Krupanj, Paraćin, Gornji Milanovac, Bajina Bašta, Šid and Mionica have been constructed, while 612 flood affected homes have been renovated in different municipalities. More than 8,000 agriculture families received support in packages of animal feed, fruit seedlings and winter crops. Thanks to the reconstruction of 13 elementary and high schools, more than 11,000 students and teachers now have restored conditions to study and work.
One of reconstructed school is Elementary school “Posavski partizani“ in Obrenovac: its entire ground floor with cabinets, classrooms, lobby and sports hall was flooded and water caused a serious damage. European Union invested €160.000 in reconstruction and provision of furniture. “After a difficult period of seven months, students and teachers can now finally study and teach in two shifts, thanks to support from the EU and the State,” said Vesna Ješić, the School’s principal. “I am pleased to see the success of our joint efforts in renovating the “Posavski pratizani” elementary school,that suffered a significant damage during May floods. It is particularly important that students will no longer have to attend classes in three shifts,” Head of EU Delegation, Ambassador Michael Davenport said. (Complete story is available at: http://europa.rs)
Aleksandar Đorđević, EU Delegation Aleksandar.Djordjevic@eeas.europa.eu
Nadežda Dramićanin, EU Delegation Nadezda.Dramicanin@eeas.europa.eu
Petar Janjatović, UNOPS email@example.com
Tijana Laban, ASB firstname.lastname@example.org
Stanislava Kulidžan, HELP email@example.com
Nevena Vukadinović, DRC firstname.lastname@example.org
Marijana Božić FAO, email@example.com