Here is just a little bit of history to start off our blog!

I have always thought that my husband often comes up with some pretty good ideas, so when he asked me one day back in 2012 how I felt about building a Children’s Home in Sri Lanka, I thought it was a pretty good idea!

He started off by asking one of his cousin’s to look for a piece of land for sale around the Colombo area, and by chance at that time, the sisters of the Apostolic Carmelite were looking for someone to complete a building for a children’s home in their convent at Wanathamulla. It is strange how things happen because, directly across the road from the convent is the Tamil Union Cricket Ground where Tony’s father and uncles played cricket in a bygone era.

We arranged a visit to meet the Sisters and to see the land. The area is primarily a slum area which suffers from poor drainage and floods easily in the monsoon season. We quickly realised that we would need to improve the drainage situation as well as fund the building of the Home.

The building project began in 2013 and the formal opening of the Home took place in April 2014 when we welcomed 18 children into the Home. Since then the numbers have swelled to 42.

In January 2015, in the grounds of the same Convent, we undertook the planning and building of a Multifaceted Education Centre. The building work on this project began in January 2015 and was opened this year in January 2017. This building includes a library, a computer room, study facilities, a counselling/tutoring room and staff accommodation as well as a dormitory to house more children.

Frances Chanmugam meeting the priest at the home

The library has been only partly stocked with books so far as this is an expensive project in itself. Also, we still have to source computers for the computer room. We have also created a playground for the children to encourage sports and games skills to be practised and played.

In April this year we began a project funding the Wikasitha Pre-school which caters for 45-50 pre-school children aged between three and five years old.

We are very happy with the progress we have made with these projects so far. The children are thriving and studying hard. They have a variety of talents which we intend to nurture and support.

We intend to encourage them as much as we can to complete their education and find a fulfilling job, becoming responsible, successful adults.

You can follow our blog and find out more about where we go from here and how the children develop.