Building bridges from Longford to Belarus

Aisling Kiernan


Aisling Kiernan


Belerus Trip

Mark Donlon and Eoin McGinnity load up the truck for the journey to Belarus.

For one Longford man, it’s a trip he has looked forward to for the last six years and this year, it seems, will be no different as he loads up his truck for the annual trip to Belarus which begins this week.

Local man Eoin McGinnity has been travelling to the poverty stricken area in conjunction with the charity Chernobyl Aid for the last few years, but this year he is travelling alone with his daughter by his side and it’s a journey he does not take for granted.

The lorry he is driving which took off from Longford on Tuesday, will travel to Belarus via Poland and is packed with all the essentials the community there needs including clothes, toys, footwear and other essentials.

“Normally I do this trip with Chernobyl Aid, but this year myself and my daughter are heading off on the trip,” Eoin told the Leader, before pointing out that he has been inundated with donations from local people.

“The generosity of people is heartwarming and I want to thank everyone who has supported the cause in any way.”

Meanwhile, Eoin plans to drop his cargo off once he arrives and then spend a few days visiting the orphanages and chatting with the local people.

Being no stranger to the area, he has built firm friendships with many of the natives over the years and they are, no doubt, looking forward to seeing him again.

“I plan to stay around for a few days; we will visit a few places while we are there and I also plan to check-in at the orphanages,” he added.

“I’ve been going to Belarus for the past six years and it is a cause that is close to my heart; it is a very different place to Longford and when I come back after the trip I am always very grateful for my lot!.”

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