More than 30 children have arrived from Chernobyl today to spend Christmas in Ireland

The children are given respite in Ireland with families, away from their orphanage in Belarus

christmas, chernobyl, adi roche, charity, ireland, belarus

Chernobyl Childrens International bring children from Chernobyl to Ireland in 2013. Image:

A group of more than 30 children have arrived in Dublin airport today from Chernobyl to spend Christmas in Ireland.

The 31 children, many of whom are orphaned and have special needs, are given respite with Irish families, away from their orphanage in Belarus.

Some have been abandoned by their parents who were unable to cope with their illnesses and disabilities.

Adi Roche and her charity Chernobyl Children International have been bringing children to Ireland at Christmas for nearly 30 years.

She hopes the orphanages there will soon be a thing of the past, and that every child deserves their own family. However she adds that achieving the goal will require legislative change in Belarus. 

Mike Cronin and his family in Blarney Co. Cork are welcoming 12-year-olds Vlad and Jenya from Belarus.

Mike has hosted the two boys for the past three summers, but this will be their first Christmas in Ireland: