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Presenting ADRA Serbia

Presenting ADRA Serbia

The web page of ADRA Serbia (http://www.adra.org.rs/)

Brussels, Belgium [ADRA EU; CD EUDNews]. The Adventist Development and Relief Agency (ADRA) is a global humanitarian and development organization with a mission to work with people and communities in poverty, distress and need, to create just, positive an

May 05, 2014 | ADRA EU; CD EUDNews;

Brussels, Belgium [ADRA EU; CD EUDNews]. The Adventist Development and Relief Agency (ADRA) is a global humanitarian and development organization with a mission to work with people and communities in poverty, distress and need, to create just, positive and sustainable change. ADRA Serbia belongs to the worldwide ADRA network, comprised of over 120 supporting and implementing country offices. Some of ADRA involvement include: Human Rights, Education, Economic Growth, investment in new areas of development and sustainability (Ecology, Energy and Environment; Democratic Development). ADRA Serbia has developed its expertise in some of these areas, specifically Gender and Children’s Rights, Strengthening of national community (Gender and Children’s Rights) and Emergency Management. A strong Emergency Management programme started in the 1990’s and continued in post-conflict and post-communist Serbia and Montenegro in the 2000’s.

ADRA Serbia has an experienced team that designs, manages, and implements its programmes according to requirements and policies, and donour opportunities. ADRA operates with over 7,000 ADRA network personnel worldwide using their experience and expertise. The administrative and managerial team of ADRA Serbia includes the country and programme director, the finance directors, the programme coordinator and assistant.

Human, Gender and Children’s Rights

In the last 10 years, ADRA has implemented various projects in gender and children’s rights. It has worked with the community and the government in developing systems for prevention of domestic violence. Since 2006, two Safe Houses have been established in Kragujevac and Smederevo (central and upper-central Serbia). It has organized complex multiple support system for children and women, victims of domestic violence.

The system develops and incorporates protocols to combine and coordinate law enforcement, medical aid, legal advisory, psychological-social experts to intervene and support the victims. The ADRA Safe Houses themselves are where basic protection (like accommodation) is combined with other essential services for the victims, (such as psychological and social aid and finally with assistance in acquiring financial independence). The aim is always to strengthen the victims to become independent and self-sustainable.

ADRA efforts are supported and endorsed by the local media for the general public awareness on the issue of domestic violence. This includes considerable free media space in broadcasting promotional videos, covering sale exhibitions, book publishing and promotions, and organizing discussion groups. Safe Houses are always regionally owned, eventually becoming sustainable and locally operated, with minimal outside help.

As a result of the well-known services to the victims and the dedicated networking with stakeholders in protection of children and women’s rights, the ADRA Serbia team took part in establishing the new national Family law in 2005.

IDP and ‘Roma’ population are two groups fighting against poverty and are supported not only through the Safe Houses but also through regular yearly projects such as providing housing, food, heating, children’s parcels. Additional monetary commitment and efforts with local partners and institutions are in place to secure full integration and a sustainable future for these groups.

ADRA’s focus in the past 15 years has also been working with and for minorities (specifically: ‘Roma’) and their integration in Serbia. Series of relief aid and educational projects have especially targeted ‘IDP Roma’ from Kosovo dispersed throughout the country. Because of the acquired knowledge and experience with the ‘Roma’ issue and the established partnership with ‘Roma OCS’ (which is an essential part of this work) ADRA is now definitely qualified to be an integral part in service and support in this matter.

Strengthening the Community

Because of the efforts and services to victims of domestic violence, ADRA has acquired enough experience to share with prospective stakeholders and partners. ADRA experts conducted training sessions for government and CSO representatives of 9 Serbian municipalities. It helped institutions in providing different services to victims under new, more restrictive laws, networking and creating sensitive, more effective law enforcement.

It has worked with the community and the government in developing systems for prevention of domestic violence

ADRA published its first magazine dealing exclusively with domestic violence – “Sigurna porodica” (Safe Family). Its purpose is to make the general public not only more aware but also to promote prevention by reporting incidents of domestic violence. Web information is given offering basic information and updated links to emergent services of Safe Houses and relevant institutions nationwide.

ADRA develops comprehensive training programmes, specificially in the area of children’s rights. It is designed to help CSO’s to acquire licenses to support social services for children at risk (or in danger of becoming victims of all sorts of violence): children on the streets, victims of domestic violence, victims of human trafficking, poverty-stricken families, etc. Serbian people need networking with public and relevant CSO in synergies. This programme encourages networking and offers mentoring support to CSO getting their license and increases the effectiveness of the services and their sustainability.

Up to 40% of the Safe Houses beneficiaries are children, being witnesses as well as victims of domestic violence. These two (brother and sister) found a haven in the Safe House in Kragujevac.

Emergency Management

ADRA Serbia has been serving the needs of disaster relief in the Balkans since 1992. In the wake of emergencies such as the Balkan conflicts, floods or earthquakes, thousands are forced out of their homes and are left destitute. Often, they lack the basics like food, water, and shelter. ADRA works to prevent further loss of life by responding quickly to evaluate the greatest needs, and then developing plans to get help to the areas where it is needed most. Often, ADRA unites efforts with the local government to provide medical care, food, water, and shelter to the victims.

New Development Areas: Early Education; Ecology and Energy Efficiency

Being committed to internal development and furthering its professionalism and effectiveness, ADRA Serbia is making long-term investments in learning about new development areas, both from ADRA networking and from internationally and nationally renowned partners. Investments are not only made in human resources. The primary areas are in Early Education and Energy and Ecology Efficiency. Firstly, ADRA recognizes the importance of early childhood education of marginalized groups (‘Roma’ and people with disabilities) in the process of their social inclusion and integration. Later, ADRA is committed to joining efforts contributing, nationally and internationally, to secure sustainable future in Serbia.

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