Organisation: Catholic Charity Budweis (České Budějovice)

The citizens of the Czech Republic could only begin helping the victims of Chernobyl after the fall of the Iron curtain.

Among the first initiatives which took place afterwards was the return of the Volhynian Czechs home.( ) It was a large scale operation, coordinated by the activists from Volhynia as well as by the governments of  both states. Between 1991 and 1992 about 2000 people could move to the Czech part of Czechoslovakia. Before that most of those people lived in the areas which were affected by the Chernobyl accident. In the meantime, their children could spend holidays in Czechoslovakian summer camps. When the families arrived to their new home, they were helped when they were looking for a flat and for a job.

But the help that the Czechoslovaks (and after 1993 Czechs) have been offering the victims is not limited only to the case I already mentioned. There are some initiatives, led by diverse nongovernmental organizations, whose aim is to help the most affected countries: Belarus and Ukraine.

When I was reading the weekly published magazine „Rozhlas“, I came upon an article describing a moving story of a Czech family, which provides support (moral and financial) to a Belarusian girl, who comes from a socially disadvantaged family and suffers from thyroid illness( ).
She is a one of 125 children who are supported within the frame of the „Adopce na dálku“ initiative [Long distance adoption], which is since 2005 organized by the Caritas České Budějovice [Catholic Charity Budweis], which is a branch of the Caritas ČR, humanitarian organization active in the whole country. I decided to find out more about this organization.

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