Agreement on Understanding to build Safe House in Vranje

An Agreement on Understanding has been signed today in Vranje between the City of Vranje, Office of Defense Cooperation (ODC Office) of the US Embassy in Belgrade and B92 Fund, with which conditions are practically met for launching works on construction of Safe house in this city.


This document is signed by Sean Long, ODC Chief, Zoran Antic, the Mayor of Vranje and Veran Matic, President of B92 Fund Board of Directors. With this step, several years’ activities on the preparations for the construction of this object have been finalized.

This project commenced back in 2009, on the initiative of B92 Fund with the aim of the most southern Serbian district – District of Pcinje – and its associated municipalities Vranje, Vladicin Han, Surdulica, Bosilegrad, Trgoviste, Bujanovac and Presevo, to get its first specialized Safe house for the accommodation of women, victims of family violence. For a longer period of time now, this region is on top of negative statistics on committed violence and serious crimes against women, which is obvious from the fact that temporary shelter that operates under the local Social Work Center is constantly occupied. This is also evident due to continuous activity of the NGO Human Rights Committee that has SOS line service for women and children, victims of domestic violence.

In 2012, Office of Defense Cooperation of the US Embassy in Belgrade had joined this project, carrying out the decision of the European Command of the U.S. Armed Forces that within the program of offering humanitarian aid, it will support the financing of the construction of this facility. Afterwards, an international tender was announced for the selection of architects and contractors, on which local company Noveco from Vranje had won, which meant that all conditions were satisfied for commencing work on the construction of Safe house in Vranje as soon as in March 2014. Planned deadline for finishing the construction and releasing the facility is the end of 2014. Total object area will exceed 200 m2 with the capacity of accommodating 20 persons. The house is situated on the same location where the first women factory in Serbia was opened at the end of 19th century, which represents an interesting curiosity that witnesses the continuation of female emancipation in the south of Serbia.

B92 Fund will assist in furnishing the facility, along with offering all necessary logistic and operational assistance after the launch of the work of the Safe house of Pcinje District. On this occasion, Veran Matic, President of B92 Fund Board of Directors, stated: “In the course of 2014, B92 Fund expects the construction of yet another such facility. It is Safe house in Sremska Mitrovica designed for accommodating victims of violence of the Srem District. By those activities, B92 Fund continues fighting this difficult social problem with which the whole society faces. Unchanged trend of devastating statistics in 2013 speaks in favor of this claim, as at least 45 women had lost their lives as victims of violence in the course of last year. Apart from the construction of those two houses, in 2014, B92 Fund will carry out pilot project of economic empowerment of women victims of violence in cooperation with the Center for Social Work Sombor, under the patronage of UN WOMEN Program, with the goal to prepare former and present protégés of the Safe house in Sombor for gaining economic independence based on social entrepreneurship“.

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