Drinking a cup for a Belarus orphanage

Sinead Kelleher

Friends and family of Grace Cahillane gathered last week to support a cause close to her heart: to raise funds for the Burren Chernobyl Project.

The 18-year old organised a coffee morning to raise funds for the project in a bid to help ease the plight of those affected by the Chernobyl nuclear disaster in 1986.  The Burren Chernobyl project was established in 1993 and supports the Gorodishche Orphanage, which is home to more than 220 children and young adults affected by the many people still enduring the effects of the devastating incident in Belarus. However, they need funds to continue their good work in the region. Home-baked goods were the order of the day, as a large crowed gathered at the Inisfallen Hotel in Killarney to support the project.  Grace heard about the project's work through friends, and is herself hoping to travel to Belarus to volunteer. 

She is currently on a gap year between school and college and wants to help those less fortunate while taking this time out between her studies.  The event raised substantial funds thanks to the support from the local community and Grace is most thankful for this generous backing. Donations are still coming in for the cause through other streams. "I am still counting the donations, so we don't have a final figure yet," Grace explained following the event.  The Fossa girl is the daughter of Mike and Catriona Cahillane, and she said that the project is a very worthy cause, one that she hopes to hold more fund-raisers for in times ahead.  To find out more about or donate to The Burren Chernobyl Project, visit www.burrenchernobyl.ie/.