News Archive 2020

Milica Brajovic – From orphanage in Bijela to her own new home in Spuz


Milica Brajovic recently turned 22 years old. She began her life in Bijela in the home for children without parental care togehter with her twin sister, who prior to Milica’s departure from Bijela moved to the Komanski Bridge Institute because of serious health problems. After she came of age and it was time to leave Bijela, the Social Work Center in Danilovgrad (her home town) took over taking care of her. They cared for Milica directly while she was in the home.

Milica Brajovic was among those who received the keys in December 2019, when the municipality of Danilovgrad togehter with the Ministry of Labor and Social Welfare and Help were distributing the keys of 12 apartments. Milica is the beneficiary of one of two apartments made available to the Center for Social Work Danilovgrad that were earmarked especially for cases like hers.

This optimistic, energetic and cheerful young woman welcomed guests from the Montenegrin government, Deputy Prime Minister Milutin Simovic, Labour Minister Kemal Purišić, Deputy German Ambassador Christhop Breuning, Danilovgrad Mayor Zorica Kovacevic, Help Coordinator Klaus Mock and another dozen people accompanied by them, including media cameras. With the welcome, she offered to treat them with juices and sweets.

With a hearty smile, she thanked everyone for the opportunity to start a new phase of life in a new and comfortable apartment, as well as for future help in finding a job. The support and the safety needed was given to her by the Director of the Center for Social Work Danilovgrad, Maja Luketic, who is practically her guardian and also the Mayor of Danilovgrad, Zorica Kovacevic, whom Milica asked for the photo discretely while they were leaving the apartment.

She gladly agreed to our short visit after the closing ceremony. With another warm welcome, she first asked for a joint photo with the Director of the Center for Social Work “Aunt Maj” as Milica called her.

“As you can see, everything I have here is the best and the most beautifull. I am happy to be here in my area, I am originally from Jelenak, and I have Aunt Maja who takes care of me.”

Like all young people of her age, Milica has plans for the future and a dilemma about choosing a future occupation. But first she wanted to emphasize the following:

“Now that we are talking about work, I want to say – I am not afraid of work ! It only matters to me that I work, that I have a salary. I’m not sick, nothing’s hard for me, I can get up at 6 and 5 and 7 in the morning. It doesn’t matter, whenever I can get up and be accurate at work at all times. ”

Milica graduated from the secondary vocational school for assistant cook in Kotor, and she says that  she appreciates the efforts for her to work as a cook assistant; however,  there is something else which she would like even more than that:

“I’m in a bit of a dilemma because I really love flowers, I know a lot about them, I like to make arrangements, I know the prices-everything. I have to admit that at the moment I would love to work as a florist, somehow I find myself more involved here. ”

Since she does not like to be unemployed, she volunteered at a nearby flower shop.

“It’s a kind of practice, and a kind of help. There’s a wooden flower shop here, held by a lady with her daughter, and I help them, usually on weekends. I love to make flower arrangements, I enjoy it. ”

There is also an arrangement of dried flowers on the table in Milica’s apartment.

The Director of the Center for Social Work, Maja Luketić, also says that she feels that Milica is much more talented to be a florist, because besides her love for flowers, she also has creativity, so she sees much more in it.

“Since Milica graduated from Assistant Cook’s School, we just talked to you from Help about how we can help her find a job in the profession. But after a little thought, Milica told me that she would still like to be a florist, and I think it is a job that would be more appropriate to her creativity. I think training her as a  florist would be useful. ”

Milica says that it is not a problem for her to live alone, on the contrary, but stresses that she does not feel lonely, because she is constantly taken care of by the Center for Social Work, “Aunt Maj” in particular.

“We visit her regularly, and she is with us every day, at lunch or in the laundry room. As part of preparing the meal for those in need, we also organized one meal for Milica. So we are familiar with her life in detail, ”says Luketić.

It is very easy to see the closeness and trust between the Director of the Center and Milica Brajović. For Mrs. Luketic Milica is obviously not just a part of the “job”.

“Of course not, this is simply not possible in cases like this if we really want to take care of the children and young people who need help in the right way. Milica and I are in daily contact, very often in the evenings. For example, when the recent storm was blowing, I called her several times during the night. She is on the top floor where the strength of the wind is felt easily. One night I texted my children to go to make sure she was OK, although Milica told me not to be afraid. My children are a little older than she is, and I would have checked them out in that situation as well, so I checked her, too. ”

Needless to say, this type of work should and could only be done by persons with the positive attitude of Director of the Center for Social Work in Danilovgrad, although Ms. Luketic tells us that she sometimes knows how to be strict and critical of Milica (Milica smiles broadly on this), because young people like her are exposed to all kinds of dangers and potential abuses.

“It’s rare, and I know it’s for my own good, and I never get angry because Aunt Maj protects me, I learn a lot from it,” Milica told us without a smile.

She eventually asked me to promise her that she would get the photo I took with her and Mrs. Luketic to put it in the frame. And in the end, I had to get a chocolate bar prepared for guests.

The construction of social housing in Spuz on a municipal-owned building where Milica now lives is part of Help’s regional project “Supporting the socio-economic stability of the Western Balkans region 2019-2020”, funded by the German Government.

Biljana Jovićević


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