21 December 2020

TİKA Makes Life Easier for People with Visual Impairment in Croatia

Turkish Cooperation and Coordination Agency (TİKA) provided alarm systems to the Karlovac Association of the Blind, which was founded in Karlovac, Croatia, in 1949 and serve people with visual impairment in many areas, to make it easier for the members of the association to call for help in case of emergency.

The emergency alarm system to be installed in the houses of people with visual impairment is connected to a telephone line and has a special bracelet and necklace. In case of emergency, people with visual impairment can press the button on the necklace or the bracelet, call the pre-determined phone numbers automatically through the control panels installed in their houses, and wait for help to arrive safely at home.

The Karlovac Association of the Blind is the first association in the region to serve people with disabilities in many areas, from the diagnosis of visual impairment to the rehabilitation, training, employment, and integration into society of people with visual impairment. Most of the members of the association live alone in rural areas.

We Are No Longer Alone at Our Homes

At the delivery ceremony of the equipment of the emergency alarm systems, Mr. Denis Velimirovic, President of the Karlovac Association of the Blind, stated that people with visual impairment were already living under difficult conditions, that life has become even more difficult for them due to the pandemic, and that this gift, which was given by the Turkish people through TİKA, meant a lot to them.

At the ceremony, Ms. Anita Milcic, a member of the association, said that she has a visual impairment and lives alone since she was a child but that she does not feel alone for the first time in her life thanks to this alarm system.

TİKA’s Zagreb Coordinator Sedef Bulut noted that TİKA implements projects for the vulnerable segments of the society in all regions where it operates and will continue to carry out demand-oriented and sustainable projects in this field in Croatia. 

TİKA Integrates Disadvantaged People into Society in the Balkans and Eastern Europe

Aiming for an integrated society in Rumelia, TİKA greatly supports the integration of disadvantaged groups into society through the micro projects implemented for vulnerable or socially-excluded groups in Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Montenegro, Kosovo, Hungary, North Macedonia, Moldova, Ukraine, Romania, and Serbia as part of the program “Overcoming My Disability in the Balkans Thanks to Turkey,” which aims to make life easier for disadvantaged groups through their employment and participation in and integration into social and economic life.

TİKA built a playground for children with disabilities in the town of Vrbas in northern Serbia and provided special education materials and equipment for Serbian and Bosniak students with intellectual disabilities in Bosnia and Herzegovina to enable them to receive a modern and high-quality education.

Furthermore, the Agency built 250 ramps for people with disabilities in Montenegro in order to improve their standards of living and enable them to leave their homes and participate in social life easily. In North Macedonia, it made life easier for people with reduced mobility by providing them with powered wheelchairs in Skopje. Moreover, it equipped the gym of the Pristina-Perparimi School for Children with Special Needs in Kosovo in order to contribute to the improvement of social activities of people with disabilities.

TİKA also provided equipment to the Parents’ Association of Children with Disabilities in Albania and renovated the Speranta Social Support Center for the Rehabilitation of Children in the Risk Group, which serves 43 children with intellectual and physical disabilities in the town of Tvarditsa in Taraclia district, which is heavily populated by Bulgarians, in Moldova.

In Zagreb, the capital of Croatia, the Agency contributed greatly to children and adults with hearing and speech impairment who receive therapy or participate in group activities in the SUVAG Polyclinic, which was the most important health center in Yugoslavia and is still active, by providing eye trackers.

In addition, Turkish Cooperation and Coordination Agency (TİKA) built a Vocational Training Workshop for students with hearing impairment and a Multisensory Stimulation Room for children with autism spectrum disorder in Bucharest.

Launched by TİKA in Rumelia, the program “Overcoming My Disability in the Balkans Thanks to Turkey” includes special education practices, social and cultural activities for students with special needs, teacher training activities, vocational training programs for people with special needs, and ensuring participation in these programs.


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