Specsavers in Northallerton has welcomed a group of young children from Belarus – an area still affected by the Chernobyl disaster – in order for them to learn more about their eye health.


The store on the High Street opened its doors to 14 children as part of their month-long trip to North Yorkshire. The team at Northallerton Specsavers provided free eye tests, donated glasses to three children who needed them, and gave every child a goody bag filled with sweets, toys, colouring books and pens.


Friends of Chernobyl’s Children


The visit to Northallerton Specsavers was made possible through their on-going partnership with the charity Friends of Chernobyl’s Children. The charity, celebrating its 25th anniversary this year, raises funds and organises visits for Belarusian children suffering from the after-effects of the 1986 nuclear disaster, where they stay with host families for temporary recuperative care.


Even now, children in Belarus receive a radioactive dose forty times greater than permissible levels; from direct exposure via the atmosphere and from indirect exposure via their food. As a result, they are at greater risk of many types of cancers, particularly thyroid cancer.


Ruth Sinclair, Store Director at Specsavers in Northallerton, said: ‘We welcome the children from Belarus into store every year with open arms. Regular eye examinations are so important and access to eye care isn’t available in their hometown, so we’re delighted to be able to help the children whilst having some fun too!'


‘We’re so proud to be a friend of the organisation, and play our part in helping those less fortunate than ourselves who come from such a disadvantaged part of the world. The children always return home with a smile on their face, healthier and excited to tell their families all about their experiences!’


To find out more about the Northallerton branch of Friends of Chernobyl’s Children, visit https://foccnorthallerton.weebly.com/


For more information about Specsavers Northallerton’s partnership with Friends of Chernobyl’s Children please visit https://www.specsavers.co.uk/stores/northallerton, call 01609 760 500, or visit the store at 120 - 120a High Street, Northallerton, North Yorkshire, DL7 8PQ.


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