A proud history of helping those affected by disaster

Posted on 29th March 2022 | in Community

Amble people have a proud history of helping those affected by disaster in Ukraine and eastern Europe.

After the Chernobyl nuclear power plant disaster of 1986, staff at Cheviot Foods worked with a charity called Medicine and Chernobyl Blyth, before starting their own charity called Chernobyl Orphan Group.

Lisa and her brother Fedya Shkredava at an orphanage in Belarus, in 2002. They were hosted by a family from Amble.

This raised money and hosted children from orphanages in Belarus which was the area worst affected by the nuclear fallout.

Helen Hardy who helped start the charity in 2007 told The Ambler what she remembers of the time: “Medicine and Chernobyl Blyth started in 1993, and the Chernobyl Orphan Group started in 2007. Families hosted children for a month every year.

Related article: Amble responds with aid for Ukraine

“People were always very kind to the children. Local dentists and doctors gave their time free of charge to help, also a local shoe shop in Amble called Shaws used to provide the children with shoes. St Cuthberts Church, MKM, Warkworth Round Table, to name a few, also donated time and money. People of Amble also donated clothes for the children. Families used to do all different kinds of fund raising.

Lisa last visited Amble with her own children in 2020

“The biggest kindness, I must say, were the families who hosted the children. They treated them with love and kindness as if they were their own. Some families are still in contact with the children who are now grown up with their own families.

“Lisa who stayed with my family when she was seven, came to stay with us with her two girls for a month in 2020. She still remembers all the kindness of the Amble people. I spoke to Lisa the other day. They are all so frightened with what’s going on.”

*A typo on the print version of this article stated Lisa visited Amble in 2000. It should have read 2020*

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