Mum helps Polish children

MUM-of-two Claire Martin has raised more than £2,000 to help cancer-stricken children from Poland's industrial cities.Mrs Martin, 44, is going out to work with the youngsters in September for a month as a way of saying thank you for her own good fortune.

MUM-of-two Claire Martin has raised more than £2,000 to help cancer-stricken children from Poland's industrial cities.

Mrs Martin, 44, is going out to work with the youngsters in September for a month as a way of saying thank you for her own good fortune.

This weekend she will continue her fundraising when she takes part in the abseil down the maternity block at Ipswich Hospital.

"So far I have raised £2,265 and I have just been overwhelmed with how kind and generous people have been," she said.


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"This cause seems to have touched the hearts of so many and they have been brilliant. People have stopped me in town and given me fivers and said this is for your project, we just want to help.

"Lots of companies have sponsored me and collections have been held in the Solar store at Felixstowe, and I am having a stall on The Triangle in Hamilton Road on July 24."

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Mrs Martin, of James Boden Close, Felixstowe, is to be a volunteer worker at a mountain respite centre where the youngsters are able to escape from their toxic fume-filled streets around Silesia to where the air is cleaner.

"When I look at my own two children and the opportunities they have had in life, I think how lucky we have been," she said.

"Living in England we have a nice environment and, no matter how bad things seem, we will never know lives like some people around the world have to put up with and endure every day.

"I just wanted to do something for someone else, for children who have not been as lucky as my own – to give something back."

The Polish youngsters are called the country's "forgotten children" and many of them are seriously ill because of the fumes from the foundries, steel mills, chemical plants and coal mines where they live.

She is calling the trip to the Mountain Haven respite centre at Lipnica Wielka, about two hours from Krakow Claire's Quest, and is really looking forward to the challenge

Her employers at Ipswich Hospital have allowed her to take the time off and her husband Richard is being very supportive, as are her children Carl, 19, a university student, and Amy, 16, a student at Orwell High School.

The trip is being organised with the charity Children in Crisis, which has projects all over the world to help youngsters affected by conflict, deprivation and poverty, by providing healthcare, protection and education.

The haven was set up in 1994 for around 30 children aged two to 18 to stay for two weeks at a time to enjoy clean air, which strengthens them physically and psychologically, giving them a boost to help them fight their illnesses.

n Anyone who would like to sponsor Mrs Martin for her trip can call or text her on 0781 211 5526.

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