“After 27 years, we finally have something which is ours,“ observed Slađana Perendija, one of six recipients of housing units in the newest completed building within the Regional Housing Programme to support the most vulnerable citizens. The European Union, as the largest donor to the Regional Housing Programme, has helped the construction of 1500 housing units and ensure permanent and decent housing, after having spent decades moving within temporary, often poor conditions.
“This programme is all about giving hope and a roof over the heads of the most vulnerable citizens of Bosnia and Herzegovina. The European Union was founded on two principles: peace and solidarity. These principles are also very important here in Bosnia and Herzegovina and it is why we are here. You know what it means to have peace, and solidarity is something with which we live here every day. We are happy to be a part of this programme and support the most vulnerable groups,” noted Ambassador Johann Sattler, Head of the Delegation of the European Union and EU Special Representative in Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Ambassador Sattler visited the newly finished building in Istočno Sarajevo, which is one of three buildings, constructed due to savings made within the project. The six families were also promised a new access road to the building which the local administration will finalise in the upcoming months.
Representatives of the Republika Srpska Secretariat for Displaced Persons and the BiH Ministry for Human Rights and Refugees underlined that the programme has shown concrete and sustainable results. They underlined that new programme phases will be unlocked in the upcoming period, aiming to help more citizens ensure adequate socio-economic conditions .
“Our duty is to ensure social equality for all citizens. The biggest progress is in the fact that six families will have a roof over their heads. We are confident that the Regional Housing Programme will enable us to help these people live a decent life,” said Ljubiša Ćosić, East New Sarajevo Mayor.
The European Union has provided over 230 million euro to the Regional Housing Programme, to facilitate permanent and sustainable housing for refugees, internally displaced persons and returnees through the construction of apartments in residential buildings and renovation of houses. The ultimate goal of the Programme is to build some 3,200 residential units in BiH by 2021.