Money raised in 7 days to buy apartment for 6-year-old Nadja and her grandparents, living in a shack
Nadja's grandmother Slavica is moved by the care shown to her granddaughter by many unknown people
6-year-old Nis resident Nadja Mladenovic Bilbija will no longer live in a damp shack, the only home she's ever known, thanks to noble people from all over the region, but also from abroad who, after media reports about the case, collected enough money to buy an apartment for the family in less than a week.
The girl, who has asthma, is being raised by her grandmother Slavica and grandfather Svetomir because both parents abandoned her. They live in a shack in the Vinik settlement, five kilometers from the Miroslav Antic school where Nadja began attending pre-school this year.
It was her teacher Milica Marinkovic who discovered the problem when she saw the tiny child wearing rubber boots and eating a piece of bread and lard, which she brought to school as her lunch. Marinkovic alerted the teaching staff and parents, so the 6-year-old started to receive help. After the story was carried by journalists, thousands of people joined this humanitarian campaign.
"I can confirm that the money for a modest apartment has been raised. I don't wish to say how much money it is, but it's enough for a one-bedroom apartment. It's the best solution for both Nadja and her grandparents, because the house where they now live is too damaged to be worth investing in. Also, her apartment will be bought in the city, which will make it easier for her to attend school," said Nadja's teacher.
Nadja's grandmother Slavica is moved by the care shown to her granddaughter by many unknown people.
"I am grateful to Nadja's teacher, headmaster Milos Stankovic, the students' parents and all the people who helped my child finally get a roof over her head that she needs. I'm going to Studenicka Street right now, there are some apartments for sale there and I'll see if we can find a home there. We need an apartment on the first floor because both me and my husband are old, I walk with a cane, and my husband has a heart condition. If there is some money left, we will buy some furniture, and the rest, if there is any, will be deposited in Nadja's name, so she has something when we are gone," says Slavica.
She stresses that when once the apartment is bought, she will invite reporters so that all those who have helped can see that the money was spent for the right purpose.
"I don't know how much money was raised because I never went to the bank or took out a single dinar. It's Nadja's money, she'll be the owner of the apartment, we'll only be living there while we're alive. We would like, if possible, to repair the old house so that we can go there in the spring, because we are growing homemade fruits and vegetables for our granddaughter," says Slavica.
As we learned, Nadja's grandmother will soon become her formal guardian - a role that her father has now, but one that he has failed to fulfill.
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