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Friends of Chernobyl’s Children – Medway!


Thirty years ago, in the early hours of 26th April 1986, an explosion occurred in one of the reactors at Chernobyl’s nuclear power plant, releasing hundreds of tonnes of radioactive particles into the atmosphere. Most of the radioactive particles contaminated areas close to Chernobyl such as Belarus, Ukraine and Russia, but radioactive deposits were blown across much of the northern hemisphere, including the UK. Hundreds of thousands of people were exposed to extremely high doses of radiation in the days and weeks that followed – some front line emergency personnel even received fatal doses. Thousands of people were evacuated from nearby towns, never to return to their homes.

Today the impact of the Chernobyl disaster is still very much felt in Belarus – vast areas of the country will never be habitable again because radiation takes thousands of years to degrade, and radiation exposure continues to have significant impacts on the health of the population. The children in Belarus, even now, receive a radioactive dose 40 times greater than permissible levels. This comes both from direct exposure from the atmosphere and from indirect exposure from their food (because the soil they grow their food in is contaminated). As a result, they are at greater risk of many types of cancers, particularly thyroid cancer.

So how does FOCC help?

More than 500,000 children live in contaminated areas in Belarus, where most live in extreme poverty. Offering these children a break away from the contamination – to eat, drink and breathe cleanly for a few weeks – can boost their weak immune systems and perhaps even extend their life spans. And that is exactly what FOCC aims to do.

The charity raises funds to bring children aged between 7–12-years-old from Belarus to the UK for one month. If possible, the selected children will return annually for four consecutive years. Each child receives one year’s supply of multivitamins to last them until their next visit, and whilst here they receive general health, eye and dental checks.

ALL funds raised by FOCC – Medway are used for the children and their visits. None of the volunteers or host families are paid and all give their time and talents for free.

In June 2016, FOCC – Medway will host 12 children and 2 interpreters from Belarus. Not long to go now!


logo in white box for site iconPlease donate to our cause

You can do so via our My Donate page here: goo.gl/VQFtkp.

You can also get in touch with us by contacting Linda and Tony – FOCC Medway’s coordinators – on our Facebook page or email: foccmedway15@gmail.com.

Friends of Chernobyl’s Children (FOCC) – Medway funds yearly recuperative visits of one month for socially disadvantaged Belarusian children (aged between seven and twelve) from the areas still devastated by the 1986 Chernobyl nuclear disaster. All money donated is used directly to support FOCC Medway’s objectives and there are no paid officials in any part of the Charity. Charity No: 1095997. If you would like to learn more about what we do, please see here: https://foccmedway.org/our-group/.

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