Floods recede in Balkans to reveal desolation
The Balkans have witnessed catalysmic scenes as heavy rains caused widespread flooding across the region. Homes, roads, farms and bridges were washed away in days. In Serbia and Bosnia and Herzegovina, 150,000 people were evacuated.
Now people are returning to their villages to find a disaster zone. Homes, farms and livelihoods have been destroyed. Many place remain under thick brown mud and electricty is down. Livestock have been killed and with Summer underway, there is a fear of disease spreading.
Caritas Internationalis members Caritas Serbia and Caritas Bosnia have been providing hot meals, canned food and clothing to families since the start of the crisis.
But with the true extent of damage only now becoming clear as floodwaters recede, Caritas Internationalis is launching humanitarian programmes in both countries.
In Bosnia, Caritas will support 24,000 people to clean up their communities as well as continuing to give them food and clothing. Staff will focus their efforts along the Sava, Bosna and Vrbas rivers in the North
In Serbia, the emergency relief programme will include provision of food and hygiene items to 5,200 families and provision of livestock food.