It seems hard to believe that thirty years have passed since the Chernobyl Disaster shocked the World. On 26 April 1986 an explosion at at the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant in The Ukraine released large quantities of radioactive particles into the atmosphere. These spread over much of the western USSR and Europe, even reaching parts of the UK.
The effects on the people and environment were devastating and remain hidden behind a wall of secrecy. In fact the full impact may never be totally revealed. Those hit worst were the young children in the surrounding areas, forced to grow up and to live in the highly toxic environment left behind. Even those being born today will suffer from the effects of radiation and social deprivation caused by the accident.
Last year we published an article about Herne Bay Freemason, Daniel John and his wife Charlotte. In May 2015 they established the Herne Bay branch of the Chernobyl Children’s Life Line. This is a charity that seeks to help families in Ukraine that were affected by the disaster. Charlotte is Chair and Daniel Vice-Chair of the Herne Bay Link.
In February, Charlotte, Daniel and their youngest son Alfie, returned to Borodyanka in Ukraine loaded with cases full of equipment to distribute to those in need. Included in their baggage were eight large cases, musical instruments, clothing for hospital staff and a double buggy, much of which had been generously donated by people who were touched by the plight of the people still suffering from the after effects of the disaster.
With the 30th anniversary of the Chernobyl disaster approaching in April, a service will be held at Canterbury Cathedral on Tuesday 26th April 2016, at 7.30pm with Guest Speaker Lt Colonel Igor Pismenskij. Igor, then a Colonel in the Soviet army, was part of a helicopter crew which carried out numerous flights over the destroyed reactor to put out the fires of Chernobyl.