Annual Student's 10K Walk for Chernobyl

Dublin, 18 November, 2004             

Despite the inclement weather, hundreds of students from DIT campuses citywide today participated in the annual Student's 10K Walk.

Set-up in 2000 by Dublin Institute of Technology Marketing Lecturer, Joe Mc Grath, each year the 10K Walk raises thousands of euro worth of funding for humanitarian projects in post-Chernobyl Belarus, a country with unforgiving health, social and economic problems.

This year's fundraising will focus attention on sustainable development - working with Belarussians to increase the quality of life for the most disadvantaged in society. This will include setting up a major hospice care centre programme in the Gomel region, adjacent to the Chernobyl radiation exclusion zone. Representatives of the Student's 10K Walk are working with local doctors and volunteers to make this project feasible. This scheme is uniquely placed in that it is entirely dependent on the Student's 10K Walk as its sole source of funding.

In addition to this, two other projects will receive funding: one involving the purchase of a bus to transport disabled children to and from a dedicated day-care centre in Minsk, and another which in conjunction with Belarusian volunteers will create small homes for mentally and physically challenged people in caring communities, preventing them being institutionalised in asylums.

With spirits high and still dry despite the weather, DIT students made their way to Trinity College and O'Connell Bridge, rendezvousing with counterparts from other Dublin colleges before moving on to the Phoenix Park. Throughout the walk, DIT were the best represented college, a testament to the drive and determination of both the organisers and the students themselves, many of whom collected additional sponsorship by agreeing to walk in fancy dress.

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