Bonsall & Derbyshire Dales Link  
 

Host Families needed for 2017’s Chernobyl Children visit

The Bonsall and Derbyshire Dales Link of the nationwide Chernobyl Children’s Lifeline charity are appealing for volunteer families to host Ukrainian children this summer.

What is it all about?

Every summer, around one thousand Ukrainian and Belarusian children affected by the Chernobyl disaster come to the UK for a four-week health recuperation holiday funded through the efforts of the Chernobyl Children’s Lifeline charity (CCLL) local Links. During their holiday the children enjoy living in a peaceful, clean and healthy environment, breathing clean air and eating uncontaminated healthy food – something they can’t easily obtain where they live. Most families have to grow their own ‘fruit and veg’ in their kitchen gardens which are all too often contaminated with harmful radionuclides such as Caesium 137 and Strontium 90.

Bonsall & Derbyshire Dales Link — your local Link

The Bonsall and Derbyshire Dales Link of CCLL was formed back in 2002 by its current and founding Chairman, Chris Broome, a Bonsall resident. One of over 80 Links throughout Great Britain, the Link raises its own funds to bring groups of between ten and twenty children who live in contaminated areas of Ukraine and Belarus to their local area, to offer them four weeks of fun, love, and care within the framework of a healthy lifestyle, as well as free eye tests and dental treatment, if they need it.

Who can help?

We are urgently appealing for volunteer families, including couples of all ages with or without their own children, to host Ukrainian children of between 10 and 12 years of age, in pairs, for two or four weeks in this years’ summer programme.

We would be delighted to hear from families living in the Derbyshire Dales area. While the heart of the Link is the village of Bonsall, the Link has host families that live in Matlock, Wirksworth, Darley Dale, Rowsley, Starkholmes, Lea and Birchover as well as from other Derbyshire villages, including as far afield as Hathersage and Calton over the county border in Staffordshire.

Being a host family

...is a rewarding and fun-filled experience! For two or four weeks two Chernobyl children live with you in your house, sharing your roof, food and lifestyle with you in your house as part of your family. The children have an eventful educational and entertainment programme, visiting places of interest across the Dales and beyond, taking part in many activities, - and you are more than welcome to join in!

We understand, however, that host families have to cope with their own life commitments, so there is no obligation to stay with the children every day, from the early morning until the evening. We always encourage host families to take some free time by having a support family have their children for the day.

The children normally have basic knowledge of English, as they learn it at school. Even if they fail to understand you or explain what they need, their group leader, who is normally their English school teacher, will be accessible by phone 24/7.

Please see our Q&A page to find out more about hosting children.


«We hosted for the first time last summer after being a support family for a couple of years and found our experience truly amazing and rewarding! Those two weeks, packed with exciting activities and lots of fun, have flown by in an instant, in an absolutely relaxed, friendly and totally hassle free atmosphere – and now we’ve made great pen friends with one of them! It was so heart warming to see happy smiles on their faces, and we are so pleased with the small part we have been able to contribute for their welfare» - a volunteer host family of 2015

 

Think you can help?

If you would like to make a real difference to the lives of some Chernobyl children this summer please contact Chris Broome, the Link Chairman, on Tel. 01629 824512 or by email to chair.bonsall@ccll.org.uk to find out more. For more general information about the work of the charity visit the national charity website at www.ccll.org.uk.

Becoming a host family is not the only way to give help to the Chernobyl children. There are many other ways in which you can offer a helping hand to those who need it. Call Chris to find out how .

Some facts

Chernobyl Nuclear Power Station explosion on April 26, 1986 is undoubtedly one of the most tragic pages in human history. Radiation fallout from the destroyed nuclear reactor affected most European countries to some extent but Belarus, Ukraine and western Russia were, by far, most affected with the territory of Belarus receiving approximately 70% of the fallout. This year is the 30th Anniversary of the disaster.

The children invited over today, being the 2nd generation of Chernobyl children, have the same health issues as many of their parents had, still need our help to improve their prospects of leading a healthier and longer life. Radiation ingested from food and water as well as from dust in the air can give rise to many diseases in children and young adults, including life threatening cancers, heart disease and disorders which can affect many other organs in the body.

Bonsall & Derbyshire Dales Link volunteers with children at the annual welcome barbecue

A group visit to Fire Station in Matlock, 2016

Bonsall Carnival, 2014

In the café at the summit of Snowdon, North Wales, 2016

At Crookstone Barn, Edale, 2016

Lantern Procession at Bonsall, 2014

 

 

Please call Chris Broome on tel. 01629 824512 or chair.bonsall@ccll.org.uk if you are able to help

 

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