Blazing to Serbia meets Crown Prince Alexander and Crown Princess Katherine in Belgrade
Our FIRE AID member, Blazing to Serbia, has recently returned from a visit to Tometino Polje Volunteer Fire Unit in Serbia where work is underway to construct a new fire station. Volunteer builders from Wales are supporting the construction over a 4-week period; the new fire station will house one of the modern fire appliances donated by Blazing to Serbia. In response to this work the project team were invited to the White Palace in Belgrade to met with the Crown Prince Alexander and Crown Princess Katherine. The team had a successful meeting with the Royals who were impressed with the project work, so much so that the meeting was extended by 15 minutes! Both the Crown Prince Alexander and Crown Princess Katherine encouraged and supported the donation of further fire appliances to Serbia. During the meeting Blazing to Serbia’s donation of 65 hospital beds to a hospital in Sremska Mitrovica was commended by Crown Princess Katherine. This is an area of work her Foundation focuses on and so the project team were introduced to the Director of the foundation and discussed how the two organisations could work together in future.
Following this successful meeting the team rushed off to meet with members of the Serbian Red Cross to finalise plans to donate Christmas gifts to the village of Bosut. Local villagers and the Major warmly welcomed the team; it was here that the team met a remarkable young lady called Bojana Gladovic. Bojana told the project team her story; at the age of 21 she was involved in a serious road accident that changed her life forever. Fourteen years on, Bojana is on the board of the Union of Paraplegia & Quadriplegia of Serbia. She also works as a volunteer councillor and regularly visits schools to explain the importance of road safety.
Bojana requested help for acquiring wheelchairs, as people affected by road incidents can often wait between 6-10 months for a wheelchair, something Bojana experienced herself. Blazing to Serbia left the meeting determined to support Bojana. They are currently looking for wheelchairs to donate.
Before heading back to the UK the team made one last stop to Ruma Fire Station to meet with the fire fighters who had previously received training from the team and to check on the two fire appliances that were donated by Blazing to Serbia. The team can happily report that both the appliances are well maintained and continue to support the fire fighters in their challenging role.