FOCC Silverdale & Arnside - Charity No. 1146476
26th April 1986, saw the nuclear power plant at Chernobyl in Northern Ukraine explode &
subsequently blanket Belarus with radioactive contamination. The 'Friends of Chernobyls Children' is a registered
charity working throughout the UK providing respite care for disadvantaged children from the contaminated areas of
Belarus following this nuclear catastrophe.
The most northerly village in Lancashire
abutting the Cumbrian border. Silverdale in Lancashire links with Arnside
in Cumbria to form a designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. The village of Silverdale nestles in beautiful
countryside where the Kent Estuary opens into Morecambe Bay. Silverdale is a perfect place to offer respite and a
warm welcome to children from the contaminated areas of Belarus.
Group Coordinator: Olwyn Keogh M.B.E Charity Founder & Director.
Tel: 01524 702330 or E-mail: email@example.com
Chernobyl’s Children (Silverdale
& Arnside) is
working with the
children and families who live in the in the regions of Mogilev, Krichev, Cherikov and Krasnapolie near the Russian
border, all living within the swathe of land which is severely contaminated by the Chernobyl disaster.
group of 17, 7 year old children from needy, socially disadvantaged families and 2 interpreters visited Silverdale
and Arnside in September 2012 for 4 weeks, to breathe our clean air, eat good, clean food, enjoy some wonderful TLC
from local host families and enjoy our magnificent surroundings.
After a wonderful 4 weeks spent with us our children returned to Belarus in October, waved off on their long
journey home by their host families who had cared for them so well during their stay, with bags packed to bursting
with things they need to help get the through their harsh winter. These children and their families will now come
under the support network of FOCC and can always come to us for help should they need it. The same children will
return to us each year for the next 4 years for recuperative care and respite from the terrible conditions in which
The months of preparation, the fundraising and all the work whilst the children were here culminated into what
became a truly unforgettable and very successful month for everyone involved and the lives all those people will
never be quite the same again. The farewell concert provided by the children was truly
Imagine if you can 17 children (see photo) from Eastern Europe all 7 or 8 yrs old arriving in a strange country
which is entirely different than their own after a 17 hour journey, hearing people speak a different language,
different food, everyone a stranger except the interpreters who have travelled with them.
further photos see thumbnails at bottom of page.
who are involved in every FOCC group countrywide are amazed by the way the children settle down, adapt, eat and
literally become part of the family they are staying with in a very short time, not to mention the speed in
which they learn to speak English. But the
language of love needs no interpretation and they have received so much love, care and kindness from everyone
they have met here. For all of these things our children will hold Silverdale and Arnside in their hearts until
they return next year and we cannot thank our local communities enough for their support.
children have been seen by a Dr, Dentist and Optician and we are so grateful to those who have made their time
and talents available to us. Despite the continuous wet weather we were able to get out on some great outings
all of which were either given to us free or kindly sponsored by a local person. Wellies were the order of the
day – almost every day - but we were not deterred and pushing the minibus out of the mud became a fairly regular
occurrence which the children thought was great fun.
FOCC is a hands on, flesh and blood Christian Charity with no paid staff. We have 34 FOCC groups countrywide
bringing approx. 500 children each year. We exist primarily to give recuperative care to children from
disadvantaged families living in contaminated areas of Belarus. FOCC is about people from different denominations,
different localities, different walks of life and different talents all pulling together to produce something quite
wonderful. Working together we can and do make a big difference.
thanks to our local church communities, Silverdale Cricket Club, the Silverdale Hotel, the WI's of Arnside and
Silverdale, Bleasdale School for the use of their swimming pool and Silverdale St John’s School for making our
children so welcome each week. The AONB, our dentists, opticians and Drs who gave us their time and expertise
by no means least our sincere thanks to the hosts of our children and interpreters without whom none of this
could be possible. The children’s lives have been changed forever but then, no one who has come into contact
with these children or this Charity, will ever be quite the same again.
Please click on thumbnails for photos