The gift of life

PUBLISHED: 11:09 08 March 2007 | UPDATED: 12:18 04 May 2010

I WOULD like to say a big thank you from the East Cambridgeshire branch of the Chernobyl Children Life Line charity to the many local companies, individuals and host families that made the stay of 11 Belarusian girls in our area so memorable and worthwh

I WOULD like to say a big "thank you" from the East Cambridgeshire branch of the Chernobyl Children Life Line charity to the many local companies, individuals and host families that made the stay of 11 Belarusian girls in our area so memorable and worthwhile.

The children, all from the part of Belarus affected by the Chernobyl nuclear power plant explosion in 1986, stayed with host families in and around Ely, Littleport, Newmarket and Soham.

They went tenpin bowling and swimming, were given eye and dental checks, visited Ely Cathedral and a wildlife park and were given lots of clothing, shoes, toiletries and other gifts.

The month's holiday in our clean environment can add up to two years to their lives, and the charity, which is run entirely by volunteers, could not arrange such trips for these children, all of whom are chosen because they are suffering in one way or another from the after-effects of the nuclear fall out, without this wonderful support and assistance from the kind-hearted residents and business people in our area.

The children enjoyed themselves enormously and had benefited from their stay with us, and many shed tears as they boarded the minibus to take them to Gatwick.

However, with the continued kindness and support of local businesses and residents, the charity will bring another group of at least 10 children to our area for a four-week stay in June.

MARIA SHELTON

Fund-raising coordinator Chernobyl Children Life Line

East Cambridgeshire Link

Low Road

Queen Adelaide

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