Wantage Overseas represents the Community’s involvement in and support of projects outside the UK, particularly in countries where the Community formerly had a presence.
The Wantage Annual Overseas Review
This report offers insights from staff and volunteers involved in some of the works and projects which CSMV helped to establish and with which it continues to maintain a lively connection. The Review highlights the ongoing needs of vulnerable, disadvantaged and disabled children and adults who continue to be supported by the Community, through the Wantage Overseas Fund. You can download the latest edition of the Review here.
The schools, hostels, orphanage and nursing care which CSMV established in Pune, India have continued to flourish and are developing under the care and guidance of dedicated staff. The Society of St Mary the Virgin in India (SSMVI) is the direct successor to CSMV in India, with the same aims and objectives.
The Society working in modern day India is pioneering outreach work as well as developing the existing educational work together with medical care for the elderly. The site has two schools: St Hilda’s (Marathi medium) and Epiphany (English medium: 850 students and some 50 staff) providing education from nursery to senior certificate. St Michael’s residential hostel accommodates about 150 girls and young women. Besides the two schools in Pune, there is the Shanti Sadan Primary and High School in Lonavla, situated about 75km from Pune. It is a co-educational, English medium school with around 350 students.
Much of the overall caring work is aimed at enabling children to emerge from severely underprivileged and marginalised backgrounds in a secure and balanced way. The Wantage Overseas Fund provides annual support and regular reports are received from the Administrator as well as from others.
Suitable volunteers are always welcome to work alongside the dedicated staff in India. Do contact us for more details if you are interested in this unique opportunity.
Irene Homes is the main work of those with which CSMV continues to keep in touch and support financially. It provides life-long residential care for those disabled by learning difficulties. Full time staff are caring for almost 90 women residents in eight family houses. In addition, 40 Day Care Centre workers assist in the workshops (which are also open to non-residents).
The craft work undertaken is sold as part of Irene Homes’ fundraising efforts and those responsible for the craft items receive a small wage, which helps to give self-affirmation. The Day Centre workers give support by providing courses, creative activities and outings, thus enabling the residents to lead as full a life as possible. Important links are maintained with the work of Irene Homes by South African Associates and Oblates of CSMV.
A range of individual and small group needs are aided by the Wantage Overseas Fund which continues to give regular assistance to pastoral and educational ministry. In particular, a pre-school for orphaned and vulnerable three to six year olds at Gabane, a large traditional village, is being supported and encouraged to expand by Wantage Overseas grants.
The network of CSMV Associates and Oblates, represented in different ways in each country, helps to maintain essential support for Wantage Overseas and, wherever possible, visits are undertaken by CSMV Sisters.
How might you help?
If you feel led to visit any of the Wantage Overseas projects and to write briefly (around 300 words) about your alongside impressions, your text would be considered for inclusion in the next edition of The Wantage Overseas Annual Review.
Donations for our work overseas from individuals, groups, parishes and institutions are much needed and greatly appreciated.