It is hard, perhaps insulting, to write about tragedy from a distance.
Words are of no help to those who are struggling on a daily basis with the simple business of staying alive.
People without power, without water to drink.
People without homes, their lives torn asunder by the elements.
This post is a tribute to the unsung heroes of Belgrade and beyond in the Balkan region.
Those who travelled to towns engulfed with water, to help build barricades and provide help to those in peril. To those who have provided blankets and clothes and food and water for those in need. To those who have taken others into their homes and communities.
And those who did all these things did so without a murmur, a collective effort by many hundreds and thousands of people coming together across the region to forget their differences. To forget the harsh economy, forget their problems in order to hold out a hand to those in need in their darkest hours.
I have no pictures to do this event justice. I was not there. I did not help. My words of support and solidarity just that, just words.
Look around the web and you will see the photos of those who were there, boats plucking people from the water, lines of young people passing sandbags from hand to hand.
If you need a reason to respect this region, these people, look no further than their united response to the horror of the last few days.
And if you can, hold out a hand to help those who helped others. Hold out a hand to help get this region back on its feet.
For more information about how to help take a look at the links below:
“Help the people and children suffering in floods. Together we are stronger!”
B92 – News – Death toll reaches 20, new evacuations ordered.