The author of the book is Đordana Barbarić and the author of the photographs is Leo Lendić.
At the presentation, it was underscored that the publication is a record of our times, that it speaks loudly about a significant global social problem and aims to spotlight the issue of poverty and social exclusion and indicate all resources and opportunities that existed in Croatia providing help and support.
The main message of the book is that “infrastructure” exists for eradicating poverty in Croatia, but connectedness is lacking.
“Connecting, networking, cooperation, solidarity and effective policies for combating poverty are becoming imperative,” said the author of the publication, Đordana Barbarić from the association MoSt.
The problem is, she said, that processes are very slow in Croatia — reforms can last decades.
“No one in Croatia should stay hungry, without a roof over their head or without support. No child, individual or family should live without electricity, water, a hot meal…,” said Barbarić.
She pointed out that Croatia has the Social Welfare Act, strategies, plans, protocols, funds. We have 555 local government units — 428 municipalities and 127 cities, as well as 21 units of the regional government, which have social welfare departments, programs, measures, finances, and legal obligations. There are 80 social welfare centers in Croatia, 38 branches, and a large number of employed experts.
Barbarić also stressed, the Croatian Caritas charity has a large and significant network of social services in 17 archdioceses and dioceses and 1,500 parish communities that carry out charitable activities, and the Croatian Red Cross has 131 county, city, and municipal branches.
The Croatian Homeless Network has 15 active organizations, the Croatian Network of Social Supermarkets has 18 members and as many outside the Network, and the Food Network has over 10 members. There are also dozens of citizens’ initiatives and civil society organizations in the field of the eradication of poverty.
At the presentation, it was said that 23.3% of persons in Croatia were at risk of poverty and social exclusion. Also, 43% of citizens live in families that can barely make ends meet.
It was also said that each person throws away 75 kg of food per year and that over 40,000 children depend on different forms of social assistance.
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