About Caritas

Caritas Serbia was established in 1995 to provide care and support to the vast number of people exiled from their homes and a great number of refugees arriving as a result of the civil war in the Balkan region. In these years Caritas Serbia provided assistance in food, fuel, shelter to thousands of people. Four years later, Caritas Serbia provided help after the NATO bombing destroyed hundreds of homes leaving thousands of people without food and shelter. The estimation is that since its foundation in 1995 till 2000 in different ways Caritas Serbia helped over 2 million people.

Today, Caritas Serbia continues its mission of bringing effective help to those most in need through programs such as humanitarian aid and relief, home care for the sick and elderly, advocating for rights of people in the area of mental care, peace-building programs and disaster risk reduction.

Caritas Serbia organized humanitarian aid and emergency relief for those affected by natural conflicts or disasters, such as floods, landslides and earthquakes. In 2005 and 2006 Caritas Serbia organized fundraising campaigns in order to help the people affected by the floods and landslides in Serbia. The action covered about one thousand of the families in numerous regions of Serbia. The help consisted of basic food, hygienic and construction supplies. In 2014 record rains caused historic flooding in Serbia and Caritas organized another fundraising campaign within the country. The aid for this project came also from the members of the Caritas network. With all this, it was possible for Caritas Serbia to assist over 20,000 households affected by floods and landslides, with basic food and hygiene items, construction material, electric appliances, heating briquettes and stoves, food vouchers, aid for the farmers and psycho-social support.

After the floods in 2014 Caritas Serbia started the Disaster risk reduction program, which consists in working with local communities on disaster preparedness and prevention, creating a network of stakeholders on the national and regional level and organizing educational activities in schools for the youngest generations.

Starting from 2015 Caritas Serbia had to face another emergency project, related to the refugee crisis on the Balkan route. Since then Caritas Serbia was active in providing assistance to refugees and migrants, consisting in food and hygiene items, clothes, shoes, contributing to the maintenance and renovation of the refugee centers and providing psycho-social support.

Collaboration with Caritas members and other donors is a hallmark of Caritas Serbia. In the early 2000s, the organization embarked on a partnership with Caritas Italy to establish the first mental health program, to influence the improvement of psychiatric care of those suffering from mental disorders, rescuing them from deplorable living conditions, abandoned by their families and institutions.

Caritas Serbia social programs have been oriented towards refugees and internally displaced persons from Kosovo, Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, as well as the local population in social need. The Home Care program, supported mainly by Caritas Germany, upgraded the life quality of the elderly that have health problems, who are alone and physically handicapped. Visiting nurses and household assistants travel to their homes to measure blood pressure, change their clothes, help them wash, provide physiotherapy, housekeeping, bring groceries and provide transportation.

Caritas Serbia is a member of Caritas Internationalis and Caritas Europa and actively collaborates and receives support from the global Caritas confederation.

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