Croatian Families Host Refugees for Christmas Lunch

By , 26 Dec 2016, 11:26 AM Lifestyle

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“We have opened our doors to refugees, he have let strangers in our homes which we share with the people we love.”

Twenty Croatian families have opened their homes on Christmas and hosted a Christmas lunch for about 50 refugees, as part of the “Christmas Lunch with a Refugee” campaign, organized by the Jesuit Refugee Service. The goal was to encourage communication between local communities and individuals who are granted asylum or are seeking asylum in Croatia, reports Večernji List on December 26, 2016.

The “Christmas Lunch with a Refugee” campaign was presented on 2 December with a call to the Croatian society to open the doors of its homes to people who came to Croatia in search of safety and protection, said the Jesuit Refugee Service said in a statement.

The director of the Jesuit Refugee Service Tvrtko Baron pointed out that they received daily calls from Croatian families which wanted to take part in the campaign, and last week they organized a group meeting so that the families and their guests could meet.

“This initiative was a call for specific action – to open the doors to a refugee, to let a stranger in our home which we have created and which we share with the people we love. It is an act of hospitality, without hesitation, without asking for anything in return, in confidence against fear. That is how people behave when they listen to their hearts”, said Baron.

He called on everybody to continue building a welcoming society, society which will be open to all who are forced to flee persecution and war.

Sameer from Afghanistan, who currently resides at the Reception Centre for People Seeking International Protection in Zagreb, said that he and his brother had found new friends in the family who had invited them to the Christmas lunch. “When I left Afghanistan, I left behind my brothers, parents and friends, I left my life. I did not think I was going to find another life here again. Today, after a long time, I did not feel like a stranger”, said Sameer.

The “Christmas Lunch with a Refugee” initiative is part of the “Assistance to Beneficiaries of International Protection and People in Detention Center Ježevo” project, which is funded by the UNHCR, the UN refugee agency.

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  • Due to strong wind passenger traffic is allowed only: -on the A1 motorway between Sveti Rok and Posedarje junctions (detour: DC50/DC27 state roads through Gračac and Obrovac), -on the A6 Rijeka-Zagreb motorway between Kikovica and Delnice (detour: DC3 state road), -on the DC8 Adriatic road from Karlobag to Sveta Marija Magdalena, -on the DC54 Maslenica-Zaton Obrovački state road, -on the DC27 Gračac-Zaton Obrovački state road. On the part of the DC8 Adriatic road Senj-Karlobag there is a traffic ban on: doubledeckers, trailers and motorcycles, from Bakar to Senj on the DC8 and on the A7 motorway between Draga and Šmrika junctions on delivery vans and freight vehicles with covered cargo area too. Due to fog visibility is reduced in the central and eastern parts of Croatia as well as in Gorski kotar mountain area - on the A6 Rijeka-Zagreb motorway between Bosiljevo and Ravna Gora junctions. It is occasionally snowing in the area of Zagreb. The roads are wet and very slippery because of low temperatures, especially bridges and viaducts. Rock and land sliding is possible on the DC8 Adriatic road and on the DC1 state road. Drivers are invited to keep distance, to adjust the speed to road conditions and not to start the journey without the winter equipment. During the day difficulties can be expected in roadwork areas. Until 28 January 8am-3pm traffic is occasionally suspended on the DC8 Adriatic road at Rokića part in Šibenik, detour: Vidici junction-Dumbočica tunnel-Dubrava-Meterize junction. Due to winter driving conditions there is a traffic ban on freight vehicles with trailers and all other vehicles have to use the winter equipment on the following roads of Lika mountain area:-DC42 at Poljanak and on the section Josipdol-Saborsko, -DC218 Užljebić border crossing-Donji Lapac-Dobroselo-Mazin-Bruvno, -ŽC5169 Bjelopolje-Donji Lapac, ŽC5199 Šušanj-Štirovača, ŽC59125 Perušić-Čanak, -regional and local roads in Lika/Senj county, regional and local roads in the area of Perušić and Sveti Rok. Due to roadworks traffic is suspended: -on the DC1 state road in Lučko and Stupnik (Zagreb); -on the DC6 state road, section Glina-Dvor border crossing till 15 March, detour: Glina (DC37)-Petrinja-Hrvatska Kostajnica-Dvor; -on the DC34 Valpovo-Josipovac state road; -on the DC64 state road on the section Kršan-Vozilići, detour: Kršan-Nedešćina-Štrmac; -on the DC206 Valentinovo-Petrovsko state road; -on the DC228 Jurovski Brod-Ozalj-Karlovac state road at Ozalj; -on the DC303 Brajkovići-Kanfanar junction state road till 2 February. Traffic is regulated by traffic signals/one road lane is free only:-on the DC1 state road at Tušilović; -on the DC1 Sinj-Klis Grlo state road at Dicmo; -on the DC8 Adriatic road on the section Kaštel Stari-Kaštel Gomilica, at Podstrana, on the section Zaton Doli-Bistrina, at Srebreno; -on the DC75 Poreč detour road, section Vrvari-Bijela; -on the DC303 Rovinjsko Selo-Brajkovići-Kurili state road. 15 November 2016-15 April 2017 winter equipment is mandatory on the winter sections of the state roads in Croatia (it includes four winter tyres or four summer tyres with chains ready for use).
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