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Chernobyl children enjoy arts and crafts day in Cradley
9:57am Tuesday 20th August 2013 in News
CHILDREN still coping with the effects of the 1986 Chernobyl nuclear disaster have been treated to a day of arts and crafts in Cradley.
The Belarussian children, who are spending four weeks in the West Midlands as guests of the Chernobyl Children’s Lifeline charity, visited The Oaks Project, Maypole Fields.
The project, where adults with learning disabilities create and produce art, was founded by artist and former social worker Chris Self in 2010 in the Cradley Enterprise Centre.
Mr Self said: “The parents of one of our students are hosting a child from Balarus and we thought it would be great if the whole group visited the Oaks Project.
“We had 17 children and interpreters and they had a great time using our spin painting machine and they were all able to take away the artwork they produced on the day.”
He added: “They were all lovely kids and we made a real fuss of them with Melanie Simmonds from the project painting their nails and Mandy Tomlinson created a menu for them.
“The children are from one of the most polluted places in the world and hopefully the four weeks in Britain will help their immune systems and give them some great memories.”
Belarus received 70 per cent of the radioactive fallout from the Chernobyl nuclear explosion and as a result thousands are born every year or go on to develop thyroid cancer, bone cancer and leukaemia.
Alcoholism and depression is rife amongst the population and many children end up in foster homes.
The Chernobyl Children’s Lifeline was established in 1988 and the Wolverhampton and Kinver branch bring different children to the West Midlands each year as well as raising money for projects in Balarus.
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