Search

Mum on mercy trip to help Polish kids

PUBLISHED: 21:34 08 April 2004 | UPDATED: 04:46 02 March 2010

MUM-of-two Claire Martin is to help cancer-stricken children from Poland's industrial cities as a way of saying thank you for her own good fortune.

Mrs Martin, 44, is to spend a month as a volunteer worker at a mountain respite centre where the youngsters are able to escape from their toxic fume-filled streets to where the air is cleaner.

MUM-of-two Claire Martin is to help cancer-stricken children from Poland's industrial cities as a way of saying thank you for her own good fortune.

Mrs Martin, 44, is to spend a month as a volunteer worker at a mountain respite centre where the youngsters are able to escape from their toxic fume-filled streets 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," said Mrs Martin, of James Boden Close, Felixstowe.

"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.

"They call these children in Poland the forgotten children and many of them are suffering cancer or other serious illnesses because of the fumes from the foundries, steel mills, chemical plants and coal mines where they live."

In order to make the trip - which she is calling Claire's Quest - she has to raise at least £500 for the project, but is aiming to raise a lot more.

So far she has been given £500 sponsorship by Goldstar Transport, plus sums from AMA Transport and SPR Trailer Services, and is appealing to other businesses to support her. She is also going to do a sponsored walk and hold a car boot sale.

She said: "One of the things which has struck me is that so little buys so much for the children out there - sponsorship of just £120 pays for a child to stay at the centre for two weeks, while £15 will provide two children with warm blankets and £25 four of them with special pillows.

"I am really excited about going and it will be a real challenge."

Her employers at Ipswich Hospital have allowed her to take the time off in September 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.

Mrs Martin will be working at its Mountain Haven respite centre at Lipnica Wielka, about two hours from Krakow.

It caters 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.

Most come from the pollution filled towns of Silesia, which generate 40pc of Poland's pollution and where the country's highest rates of leukaemia and malignant lymphoma have been found.

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


If you value what this story gives you, please consider supporting the Ipswich Star. Click the link in the orange box below for details.

Become a supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years, through good times and bad, serving as your advocate and trusted source of local information. Our industry is facing testing times, which is why I’m asking for your support. Every single contribution will help us continue to produce award-winning local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Thank you.

Most Read

Most Read

Latest from the Ipswich Star