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Credit: Caritas Italy

Serbian recovery after historic floods. Credit: Caritas Italy

The terrible floods in the Balkans have been the worst in the region in over a century.

Nearly one month after the tragedy, efforts have been made to restore normal life. The atmosphere of urgency is slowly fading away and the concerns related to rehabilitation are becoming the focus.

There were two types of tragedies involved: one is the floods in flat areas and the other is landslides in hilly regions. Sabac, Obrenovac and Ub are the Serbian communities primarily affected by floods, while Valjevo and Krupanj are primarily affected by torrents and landslides.

Main problems remaining in flood-affected communities are hygiene and disinfection, removing dead animals, reactivation of drinkable water, infrastructure and agricultural land.

Thanks to Caritas Serbia assistance, food and hygiene items have been provided in family packs, specially to those families with severely damaged houses, households without means for living and many children or special needs, such as disabled family members, elderly people and self-dependent mothers.

More than 7.000 households in 12 municipalities throughout Serbia have been assisted by the Caritas relief programme.

In all municipalities covered by the Caritas emergency relief programme, disinfection measures have been undertaken.

The state water supply system is secured almost for all places, with some exceptions, and the main road infrastructure has been initially rehabilitated to secure all the places which were cut-off during the crisis.

The Caritas relief programme is slowly shifting from an emergency phase towards rehabilitation phase.

Currently, Caritas teams throughout the country are completing the assessments in order to respond to the needs of the most vulnerable families in shelter, household assets, agriculture and livestock, and in psychosocial support.

From next month Caritas rehabilitation program will start in 12 municipalities throughout the country integrating community-based approach and relying on Caritas data-base of affected households established for each municipality.