Yate Rotary Club organised a fantastic trip that saw 16 children and their teachers from Belarus visit Slimbridge Wetland Centre for an educational trip.

The children, aged 10 – 11 years old, stayed with families in East Bristol for a month and as part of their visit the rotary club took them to the centre.

A spokesperson for the rotary club said: “Similar groups have been brought to the UK by the Chernobyl Children Lifeline Trust since 1998.

“These children have grown up in an area where the background radiation is still very high compared to the UK as a result of the Chernobyl explosion.

“That released 400 times more radiation into the atmosphere than the atomic bomb over Hiroshima.

“The eight boys and eight girls benefit from the visit by receiving a dental check-up and a visit to the opticians.

“Health specialists in Belarus think that these visits could add up to two years to their life expectancy.

“They have also enjoyed an extensive programme of educational trips and visits to other places of interest including Centre Parc, Avon Valley Wildlife Park, the New Forest, SS Great Britain and visit to the Seaside at Boscombe.

It has been scientifically proven that a brief stay in the UK can help to reduce the impact of radiation on children.

“A 4-week break in UK has been proven to reduce Radionuclides in a child’s system by up to 30%,” the spokesperson for the council said.

“Simply by bringing a child to the UK and exposing them to fresh air and uncontaminated food provides their immune systems with the chance to rest from the constant bombardment of radiation.

“Yate Rotary Club members were very pleased to be able to sponsor a day out again this year for these children by taking them to Slimbridge WWT.”