The Truck has finally arrived!

It has been a long haul since the money was raised but the truck has finally arrived. Last spring Mark Seymour of Kriska Transport set out to raise the funds to buy a truck for “Hope for the Future” our partner organization in Belarus. The money was raised and delivered in March 2007 but it has taken 3 trips to Germany to find the right vehicle! In this picture you see Svetlana Simanova of “Hope for the Future” with the new truck as they prepare for the return drive to Belarus.

Svetlana and the new truck.

Svetlana was very excited about the new truck and sent the following note to Dave Shaw:

Dear Dave,

We have looked for a truck that we needed for a long time but now we are lucky, we have what we wanted. The truck is in a good condition and we hope that it will work well for the help to Belarussian kids and and our organization. We are very happy that our dream has become true.

You can see our smiling faces in the pictures.

Please, thank everybody who took part in raising money for our truck and the microbus for Chausy orphanage. We appreciate it so much.

Best regards


Dave Shaw told me that the most exciting thing for him is that this is another example of us not just handing over aid, but we are giving them the ability to help themselves. Although Canadian Aid for Chernobyl personally delivers all aid to it’s final destination, many other organizations just “drop and run”. This leaves “Hope for the Future” with the difficult and expensive task of distribution. Imagine a very poor family in a remote location being told that there are 3 boxes of aid for them to pick up in Minsk! Now “Hope for the Future” has the capability to get this badly needed aid right to the people who most need it!

As I said previously, Mark Seymour of Kriska Transport spearheaded this initiative and the money was raised from the following companies:
MacKinnon Transport
Robert Transport
Rosenau Transport
Richard Muir Charitable Foundation
Calyx Transportation Group
XTL Transport
Yanke Transfer
Armour Transport
CAT Inc.
Pollock Nationalease
L E Walker Transport
Kriska Transport

These are companies that truly care and are helping us make a difference!

On a separate note … there is a small delegation going to Belarus this month and although I will not be there, I have arranged with Neil Matheson to send me pictures and updates regularly so that I can post their progress to this blog … so stay tuned!


4 thoughts on “The Truck has finally arrived!

  1. Eric

    Thanks for the note and for all that you do! I will forward this to our membership as I am sure many will be interested in reading your website as it is interesting and inspiring.

  2. Kathy Ryan

    Dear Eric, just wanted to introduce myself and extend good cheer — USA Executive Director of Chernobyl Children’s Project International (the US office the Irish group headed by Adi Roche). We are good friends with Hope for the Future. We do not bring children into the USA, but we do a number of programs inside the country. You can learn more about us at, but in the meantime I will enjoy looking at your blog. Kathy

  3. Eric


    Thank you for your very kind e-mail. I have copied our board of directors as they will all be interested in your group and it’s initiatives. Yes, “Hope for the Future” is the same organization that we partner with for all of our projects. Any advice or answers to your questions would best come from Dave Shaw our director of humanitarian aid … he is tireless in his pursuit of our initiatives, however he is in a last minute rush as he is leaving for Belarus next week. I can’t guarantee how quickly he will get back to you.

    It sounds as though your organization is on track to do some great work, not to mention what you are already doing for the children you host. 60 children is a huge number, you must have a very dedicated group to pull that together!

    I am very sorry to hear of Dima’s prognosis, although it seems to have inspired you to look at more ways to help, he must consider himself lucky to have friends like you who are looking out for him.

    Thanks again,


  4. Kate Van Dyck

    Dear Eric,

    This is my 2nd message to you! Your group is awesome! I have shared your website with all of our host families in our Northern Virginia Children of Chernobyl program, so they can learn a little more about the real conditions in Belarus and the tremendous work your group is doing there!

    You all have inspired us to stretch a little more and we are working on extending our efforts beyond hosting 60 children here each summer. We work with the non profit ‘Hope for the Future’ also. I’m assuming it is the same organization in Minsk with Mikhail as director? I visited their office when I went to Belarus last year.

    We would like your advice on our plans: we are thinking of ‘adopting’ a hospital ward for handicapped children who don’t have the opportunity to travel. Hope for the Future has some connections with several programs and we thought we’d ask them to make a recommendation on where to focus our effort. If you have any advice on the best way to set this up: sponsoring individual children, raising money for a larger purchase to benefit the program, etc… We would appreciate your thoughts!

    As I mentioned to you in my previous email, one of our visiting children who lives near Grodno, was severely injured when he ran in front of a truck last year. He is now a quadreplegic, living with a single mom in a small town with very little help. He is 13 years old.

    Working with the Jewish World Health Organization, we have been able to get some support to him. They had a volunteer orthopedic specialist from Israel who offered to go to his home and evaluate his condition and make recommendations. He also did some training with the doctors in Minsk and in Grodno which hopefully will help other patients in Belarus in the future. We financed this trip with some fundraising. Unfortunately, Dima’s poor prognosis was confirmed and other than a few pieces of equipment to make his life easier, not much can be done. If he lived in Canada, the US or even in Israel, his life would be quite different due to the advancements in rehab and technology.

    Several of our group, including myself, are planning to go to Belarus next spring to see Dima and to springboard this new effort with handicapped children. Once we get rolling, we may have more specific questions on what you have had to do to get permission to bring goods into Chaussy and other logistical steps. I hope you won’t mind sharing your expertise! Our chair of Outreach, Barbara Fallon, may also be getting in touch with you for advice.

    Again, your group is an inspiration to so many!
    Thank you,
    Kate Van Dyck
    Children of Chernobyl Program
    Host Parent

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