Anglia Ruskin celebrates Mission Accomplished

Published: 23 October 2014 at 12:19

Farewell party sees guests travel from Croatia to mark end of 18-year project

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Guests flew in from Croatia to join with students and staff from Anglia Ruskin University as its 18-year Mission Croatia project came to an end with a farewell party. The celebration was held on Saturday at the Students’ Union bar on the Chelmsford campus.

The eight visitors were staff from the hospitals that over 400 Anglia Ruskin staff and students from all campuses have visited annually for the last 18 years to carry out cleaning, decorating, plastering and refurbishing. Rev Ivor Moody, the Anglia Ruskin Chaplain who set up the initiative, also attended.

Since the mid-1990s, groups of staff and students Anglia Ruskin have visited the coastal town of Kraljevica with the aim of improving a crumbling old building that, for 100 years, had been used as a hospital for the treatment of allergies, particularly asthma. Following war in the 1990s, a number of displaced adults and children with learning difficulties were housed at the hospital, which was ill-equipped to cope with their very special needs. The project developed to include working in three other institutions near Zagreb, Selce, and Filip Jakov.

Rev Tony Cant, Chaplain of Anglia Ruskin University’s Chelmsford campus, said:

“Due to the commitment and enthusiasm of the hospital staff, together with the input of Mission Croatia and other charities, enormous steps forward have been made.
“With recent EU membership and the great strides forward the country has made in the last decade or so, the situation in Croatia has changed and we can now say, having made a big difference with the project since the mid-1990s, Mission Croatia is now Mission Accomplished. Our students regularly tell us this was a life-changing experience for them.”

Anglia Ruskin’s International Community Experience team is also involved in projects in Botswana and Ukraine and encourages staff and students to take part in these volunteering schemes each year.