Oxhill News

www.oxhill.com / www.oxhill.org.uk

South Warwickshire, England.

The Oxhill News

June 2011

This months News



Chernobyl's Children

Oxfordshire and South Warwickshire

Chernobyl's Children, Oxfordshire and South Warwickshire is a small local charity that brings children aged between 7 and 11 years old over from Belarus for a month each summer.  The children stay with host families in the area and this month away, from the poor living conditions and contaminated air and food, gives them much needed respite and their immune systems an enormous boost.  Although the Chernobyl disaster happened 25 years ago, the effects are still being felt and the children are also given full medical, dental and eye tests and any necessary treatment whilst here.

To give you an idea of the living conditions of the children; some of them live in wooden dachas and these have only a wood-burning stove to heat the building and to cook on.  The water has to be collected from standpipes in the dirt track lanes or sometimes a family has rigged up their own standpipe in the garden.  The sanitation is usually a hole in the ground in an outside shed as the dachas are not provided with sewerage facilities by the state.  Others live in dormitories which are really crumbling apartment blocks.  Each floor houses 8-10 families who all share one kitchen, one lavatory and one shower - a rubber hose attached to a cold tap.  The dormitories are either state owned or factory owned.

The children come from the city of Mogilev and surrounding area where in the summer the water supply can be cut off for as long as a month.  The electricity and gas supply is also frequently off for hours at a time.  Although the charity cannot improve their conditions at home, we can help ensure these children receive a well deserved break.

Here in the UK, the children stay with host families and during the weekdays, Christine the charity co-ordinator organizes wonderful activities that they would probably never experience back home.  They visit Cotswold Wildlife Park, RAF Brize Norton, make pizza at Pizza Express, go swimming and horse-riding and last year they spent a day in London.

If you would like to know more about the charity or would be interested in hosting a child, please get in touch with me on 01295 680411.

Any donations for our Coffee Morning on Saturday 25th June are most welcome. Please come along and join us and you will have the opportunity to meet the children who will all be attending the Coffee Morning.

Anne Marshall

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Send mail to the editor of the Oxhill News at news-editor @ oxhill.org.uk.

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Last modified: May 31, 2011