Georgia Bulletin

The Newspaper of the Catholic Archdiocese of Atlanta

Volunteers worked with Catholic World Mission (CWM) and members of the Bosnian Community Center in Gwinnett County in June to collect supplies to aid in the rebuilding after severe spring flooding in the Balkans that affected nearly a million people. The nonprofit CWM paid for the shipping of a 40-foot container filled with critical supplies, from baby diapers to tents to hygiene products.


Locals aid Catholic World Mission with help to the Balkans

Published July 17, 2014

The local Bosnian community, Gwinnett County Sheriff’s Department and Catholic World Mission teamed up in June to collect and ship relief supplies to aid displaced residents stuck in the aftermath of massive flooding and mudslides in the Balkans.

Catholic World Mission, a nonprofit based in New York, and members of the Bosnian Community Center in Gwinnett County joined with local law enforcement departments to collect supplies ranging from baby diapers, formul and tents to hygiene products. Catholic World Mission paid for the overseas shipping of the 40-foot container of supplies and has also donated pharmaceuticals to restock hospitals, a critical need.

Cpl. Brad Smith, a retired Gwinnett County police officer and reserve with the Gwinnett Sheriff Department was stationed in the Balkans on the peacekeeping mission following the Yugoslav Wars.

“I feel a great connection with the people of Bosnia, Serbia and Croatia. This is certainly a tragic situation and we want to do what we can to help,” he said.

The flooding caused mudslides to destroy homes, forcing tens of thousands of people from shelter.

The greater Atlanta area is home to the third largest Bosnian community in the country, with a significant population in Gwinnett County, according to a news release.

Donations were collected at the Bosnian Community Center, in Lawrenceville. Members of the Bosnian community, Catholic World Mission and the Gwinnett County Sheriff’s Office sorted and loaded supplies at the center before sending them on to port.

Catholic World Mission routinely ships aid overseas for areas in need of relief due to disaster or poverty. CWM shipped two containers of aid this past March to the Philippines to restock hospitals devastated by Typhoon Haiyan, according to a news release.