Children affected by the Chernobyl disaster are to be treated to new shoes at a Banbury store thanks to members of the Lions Club.
Brantano in Banbury Cross Retail Park will be visited by eight children on Thursday, June 26. They will be accompanied by Wellesbourne and District Lions Club members who receive a 50 per cent discount on shoes for the children to take home.
The club has supported the charity Friends of Chernobyl’s Children for several years. It supports Belarussian children through annual visits to the UK.
Lions member Vic Horton, who organises the event, said: “We have them for a day when we equip each child with sensible shoes having regard to the harsh Belarussian winters.”
The nuclear disaster in Ukraine in 1986 left Belarus badly affected by the fall-out and the ground, water and the atmosphere are contaminated.
Mr Horton said: “As a result, children are prey to quite serious disease and the medical opinion is that the annual 30-day holidays in the UK are of great therapeutic benefit.”
During their visit, when they stay with host families in the King’s Sutton area, the children are seen by doctors, dentists and opticians while accompanying teachers continue their education. Brantanto store manager Kate Witwicki said: “The children often wear the wrong sizes, sometimes two sizes too small, so this is a nice opportunity for us to help.”