HELP - Hilfe zur Selbsthilfe opened its office in Montenegro's capital, Podgorica, in April 1999 during the height of the crisis in Kosovo. 1999 was a tumultuous year for humanitarian organizations working in Montenegro. Beneficiary profiles and numbers changed dramatically, from a peak influx of over 84,000 Kos Albanian IDPs in May, to their sudden and massive return in July, followed by a second influx of Serbian, Montenegrin, and Roma IDPs as a result of continued unrest in Kosovo.
HELP is engaged in emergency assistance as well as in rehabilitation and development projects. Whenever possible we are linking emergency aid with selfhelp. It is our aim to encourage the efforts made by the communities affected by catastrophes and misery in order to have them improve their living circumstances themselves. For this reason we are closely cooperating with indigenous partners and NGOs knowing that these people are best familiar with local conditions, culture and needs. Thus we are complementing local efforts and provide external assistance when needed. With our projects we are not only covering immediate humanitarian needs, but we are fighting the causes as well thus aiming at durable solutions. Trying to work most effectively we do of course coordinate our projects with national and international organisations.