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Etihad Airways and Air Serbia donate aid to Serbian refugees and orphans

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More than 2,000 refugee children and orphans in Serbia have received winter clothing, food, and school supplies thanks to donations made by two airlines.

Etihad Airways and its strategic partner Air Serbia donated winter clothing, stationery, school bags, and food parcels for more than 2,000 refugee children and Serbian orphans in Belgrade.

The aid package was officially handed over at the Krnjačasylum centre in the Serbian capital on Wednesday. The donation reflects the UAE national airline’s ongoing commitment to global education and social responsibility.

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The children at the centre were joined by orphans from the Home for Children and Youth for a fun-filled few hours.

The team held an entertainment show hosted by famous Serbian TV personality Minja Subota. The event also included songs from Serbian children’s choir, clown and magician shows, as well as performances by the Serbian folklore ensemble, Talija, and Serbian celebrity singer Željko Vasi.

In addition to the event at the asylum centre, the Etihad Airways’ delegation on Tuesday visited the Home for Children and Youth in Sremčica, and spent time with children and staff members. They also donated blankets, cardigans and wheelchairs.

The events in Serbia are part of an agreement between Etihad Airways and the UAE Embassy in Belgrade to provide humanitarian and social support in Serbia. Etihad Airways has also supported education for children in Yemen, Morocco, Sri Lanka, Kenya and Jordan for the last four years.

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Juma Rashid Al Daheri, UAE Ambassador to Serbia, and Maja Gojkovi, President of the National Assembly Committee, both thanked Etihad Airways, Air Serbia and all partners for their efforts, especially in providing stationery and school items ahead of the start of the academic year.

Khalid Al Mehairbi, senior vice-president of Abu Dhabi Airport Operations and chairman of the Etihad Sports and Social Committee, said: “Every child deserves to live in a safe and secure environment with access to education. Sadly, in this world that is not always possible and so we hope that this initiative goes some way to helping these young children in the months ahead. Our special thanks goes for the UNHCR for supporting us to put a smile on the faces of the children.”

Dane Kondi, CEO of Air Serbia, said: “We are delighted to support this initiative with our partners in the Government of Serbia and Etihad Airways, and to show these boys and girls that people care, not just today but in the weeks and months ahead.”

The donations in Belgrade were funded by money raised through a series of charitable initiatives that have taken place in Abu Dhabi, in cooperation with the Women and Health Alliance International (Waha International), including ‘Walk for a Cause’, the Etihad Garage Sale, and the Ramadan Football Tournament.

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