The construction of the two new EU-funded apartment buildings for 34 families who lived in Padalište/Padallishte collective centre in Gračanica/Graçanicë municipality for more than 20 years has entered the second phase, and families are expected to move in September 2023.
In addition to the current construction of the two new buildings in Suvi Do/Suhadoll village, the EU’s project providing housing to displaced and socially vulnerable families in Gračanica/Graçanicë worth EUR 2.5 million has already completed the renovation of 22 apartments, and will therefore improve the lives of 56 families in total.
“After living for so long in very difficult conditions, 34 families residing in the collective centre in Gračanica/Graçanicë will finally have homes.
I am proud that the EU is able to assist and I hope that local authorities will continue to cater to other needs of this vulnerable population”, said the EU Ambassador in Kosovo, Tomas Szunyog.
Danish Refugee Council is implementing this EU-funded project. According to the Danish Refugee Council Country Director in Kosovo, Kristen Stec, the construction works began in July 2022 and the completion is scheduled for August 2023.
“In addition to two apartment buildings, the works also include the construction of recreational areas and a community centre with learning and play area for children, a café, and space for small local businesses, as well as the improvement of local infrastructure,” she added.
The project is implemented in cooperation with Kosovo Ministry for Communities and Return, which is contributing an additional EUR 100,000 towards the construction works, and Gračanica/Graçanicë Municipality.
“This project greatly contributes to our Municipality’s mission to improve living and socio-economic conditions for disadvantaged and displaced people and will provide a boost to the Suvi Do/Suhadoll community. I would like to sincerely thank the European Union and Ministry of Communities and Returns for financing this project, and Danish Refugee Council for implementing it,” said Gračanica/Graçanicë Mayor, Ljiljana Šubarić.
From 2002 onward, the EU in Kosovo has invested more than EUR 77 million to support return and reintegration processes and improve the livelihoods of non-majority communities. More specifically, from 2016 to 2022, the EU invested EUR 6 million into the construction of social housing to provide housing for displaced persons living in collective centres in Štrpce/Shtërpcë and Gračanica/Graçanicë municipalities.