Children of Chornobyl Relief and Development Fund Completes its Mission in Ukraine: In Final Months, $1,005,709 Worth of Aid Distributed

September 30, 2012

Before concluding its humanitarian mission and medical programs in Ukraine, CCRDF worked over the past several months to ensure that its commitment to programs and various on-going projects was either completed or passed to partner organizations.

Telemedicine Program.  On November 21, 2011, CCRDF President and Chairman Dr. Zenon Matkiwsky announced the closing of CCRDF and the launch of the final program – telemedicine.  Since that date, all 11 select partner hospitals have been equipped with the necessary equipment.  CCRDF further supplemented the final program by organizing and hosting a 2-day international conference on telemedicine in Kyiv, Ukraine [see link].  The telemedicine program is CCRDF’s final legacy in the medical field and is valued at $721,064

CCRDF would like to especially thank all the donors who made a contribution to the telemedicine program to bring Ukraine’s healthcare into the 21st century.  100% of your gift – a total of $101,064 – was earmarked for the completion of the program.

Neonatal Program.  Over the past 22 years, CCRDF’s mission has been to save the lives of children in Ukraine and the goal was accomplished by procuring medical equipment and donating it to partner hospitals located throughout Ukraine.  The most valuable and critical piece of equipment for any neonatal intensive care department is a respirator which saves the lives of approximately 80 infants per year.  Over the years, CCRDF purchased 52 respirators which will save a total of approximately 33,280 lives.   Of these respirators, 9, valued at $208,500, were purchased in the final months and were donated to children’s hospitals and perinatal centers in Chernihiv, Chernivtsi, Kherson, Kyiv, Lutsk, Poltava, Rivne, and Volodymyrets.

Women’s and Children’s Health Initiative.  In the Spring of 1998, CCRDF published its first booklet on prenatal care.  It became the first of 3 pamphlets distributed throughout Ukraine to ensure healthy pregnancies.  In 2011, as a continuation of this initiative, CCRDF sponsored a $22,000 project to translate, publish, and distribute Preemies: The Essential Guide for Parents of Premature Babies, 2nd edition, © 2010.  This book is a step-by-step guide to how parents can best care for their premature infant.  700 copies have been distributed to perinatal centers, medical and public libraries, and NICU wards across Ukraine. This initiative was supported by the Maria Hulai Lion Foundation and Stefan Wuernitzer. 

Pediatric Oncology Program.  In July 2009, CCRDF began partnering with Live Tomorrow and Project Lifeline to provide oncology medicine to children battling cancer.  The program continues to be funded by Live Tomorrow and is currently being administered by the Krona Foundation.  For further details, visit

Chornobyl Museum.  One of CCRDF’s founding objectives was to provide public information about the Chornobyl disaster as well as the medical and environmental consequences of radiation exposure. To ensure that this objective was met, CCRDF worked with the Chornobyl Museum for several years.  Most recently, CCRDF sponsored a $10,000 audio guide project to purchase audio guide equipment and to update, translate, and record the script into 8 languages: English, French, German, Italian, Spanish, Ukrainian, Russian, and, most notably, Japanese.  With this project, both the national and international public are encouraged to visit the National Chornobyl Museum to learn about what happened over 26 years ago and what the staggering statistics are today.  The museum is located in Kyiv’s Podil area at Khorevyi Alley, 1 or can be visited online at

Shchuklin Twins.  Since 2006, CCRDF purchased and delivered life-saving medicine to Ivan and Oleksandr Shchuklin who suffer from a rare genetic immune disorder called agammaglobulinemia.  This $288,000 program was made possible thanks to an anonymous donor from Ukraine who provided the funds to finance the costly, monthly IV treatments for the boys.  Since May 2012, the program continues to be administered thanks to the efforts of His Eminence Archbishop Antony of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the USA and, in Kyiv, thanks to former CCRDF employee Marta Stetsyk.  

Orphanage Program.  CCRDF has been working over 10 years with the Ukrainian Orthodox Church to improve the quality of life for orphans in Ukraine.  In May, CCRDF donated $30,000 to the UOC of the USA for the benefit of the orphans in Ukraine.  The project continues to be coordinated by former CCRDF volunteer Maryana Voronovych.  To continue supporting the Orphanage Program or for more information, please contact Bishop Daniel Zelinsky at

EURO 2012.  UEFA (Union of European Football Associations) President Michel Platini, who remembers the Chornobyl tragedy, invited a group of 100 children (accompanying persons included) affected by the disaster to the EURO-2012 game – France vs. Sweden – on June 19. CCRDF was selected as UEFA's charity-of-choice and  provided with the football match tickets and a $22,400 grant  to organize the group and represent UEFA's RESPECT campaign, which aims to improve access for soccer to all. The children who attended were pediatric oncology patients in remission, infant cardiac surgery patients, orphans from Znamyanka, and former participants of the Scholarships for Orphans program. The remaining balance of $14,145 was donated by UEFA to purchase medical equipment for partner hospitals.