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Rose Charities Sri Lanka is a registered NGO in Sri Lanka. It is based in the town of Kalmunai on the East Coast of the island. This area was devastated by the tsunami of 26th December 2004. The work of Rose Charities Sri Lanka began immediately after this event.

What We Do

This project initially focused on meeting the needs of the children injured and traumatized by the 2004 tsunami. Today Rose Charities Sri Lanka is a multi-program community-based organization registered and administered in Sri Lanka. It works with children, families and communities that are still struggling to recover from the tsunami and the civil war.

Read the most recent news from Sri Lanka

 

Sri Lanka Educational Support

High School Support

After the tsunami, the children lost many months of schooling and faced failure in their graduating exams. Rose Charities organized 4 months of extra tuition for every graduating student from 19 schools.

  • 960 students attended with an average pass of 73% (2007)
  • 176 students from 6 under-privileged village schools received classes in 5 subjects (2008)
  • 29 students gained university entrance (2008)

Pre-Schools

  • 5 pre-schools were opened for high risk children (2006-2009)
  • Pre-school workshop for 50 teachers on “joyful learning”
  • Pre-school cultural and peace-building events

School Drop-outs

  • 79 school drop-outs have been identified, counseled and re-established into school (2008)
  • micro-finance loans are made available to parents of school drop-outs to ensure they have the income to keep the children in school

Vocational Training

  • classes in sewing, carpentry, palmyra weaving, pot-making and computer skills are conducted for unemployed youth
  • 79 students graduated in 2008
  • 25 graduates obtained micro-finance loans to begin business with their new skills

University Scholarships

  • 37 students from poor families receive scholarships to attend university.
  • For $250 a year you can sponsor a student and help them through university.

University is free in Sri Lanka, however many students from poor families are forced to turn down their university places because they lack the funds to pay for books and accommodation. The University Scholarship program provides grants of approx $10/month to cover their living expenses and enable them to go to University. In 2009 there were 36 scholarships in place. All the students were doing well. To sponsor a student contact josephine@rosecharities.org

The Story of the Education program

Local teachers, school principles and parents came together with Rose Charities to develop the high school tuition program. The children had lost many months of education due to the devastation caused by the tsunami and were fearful that hey would fail their final exams. The whole community came together in an extraordinary effort to solve this problem. Rose Charities arranged meetings and it was decided that five schools would open at night. 96 local teachers volunteered their time so that every graduating high school child would get 4 months worth of daily extra tuition. This was a huge task involving nearly 1000 students. The community achieved this with a tiny budget and few outside resources. Since then, as the schools became re-established, the need for extra tuition has diminished. Classes are now conducted for approx 200 children from under-privileged villages and families.

The University Scholarship program allows students to go to University who would otherwise be unable to meet the expenses. Each student is supported by a Canadian sponsor, who donates $250 per year to cover the students’ living costs.

The Pre-Schools provide free early childhood education for children from young mothers who are struggling with poverty. The teaching workshops raise awareness of the importance of good pre-schooling.

Sri Lanka Peace-Building Activities

Since the resurgence of the civil war in 2007 ethnic tensions have increased in the community. There was a need to include the Muslim, Christian and Buddhist minorities into the larger Hindu community. This is done through multi-cultural childrens activities that bring families from all ethnic and religious groups together.

Sports for Peace

Sports for Peace is a basketball league that organizes coaching, inter-school camps and competitions for boys and girls from 14 Hindu, Muslim, Christian and Buddhist schools in Kalmunai region. The league is very popular with parents and supporters from all communities participating enthusiastically.

Community Centre

The Rose Charities Community Centre is used for multi-cultural, sports and training activities that build bridges and create community harmony. Donations to the building fund are gratefully appreciated.

Sri Lanka Micro-Credit

For full details, please visit the Rose Microcredit Website

What We Do

  • Rose Charities Micro-Credit provides loans of $50-$300 to families living in extreme poverty to enable them to begin small income generating businesses.
  • We hold information and training sessions in poor communities on micro-finance, borrowing, saving and financial planning.
  • We monitor, counsel and train borrowers and future borrowers so that they are able to run their small enterprises successfully.
  • We develop women’s special interest groups and encourage women to begin businesses.
  • We run a small savings bank as part of the micro-credit and ensure all borrowers are also able to save.
  • We run a “Share with the community” scheme that provides some financial support for borrowers who meet with disasters.
  • We provide micro-finance loans to graduates from the vocational training program, and to parents of school dropouts.

Started in 2007, the program reached 300 borrowers by April 2009 and is expanding rapidly. There is a waiting list of 600 people to take out small loans.

What is Special about the Micro-Credit Program?

The program is developed and run by a local team of Sri Lankans who understand the local conditions and have the respect of the community. It is financed and monitored by a Canadian committee of business experts, who ensure that reporting and management meet international standards.

By April 2009 the program has a 99% recovery rate of loans and has helped over 300 families to improve their standard of living. It has a loan portfolio of $40,000 and is very nearly self-sufficient, with loan interest covering all the staff costs.

Get Involved

The Rose Micro-Credit committee in Canada is always delighted to have new members. The committee monitors the project, raises funds, develops marketing materials and PR. We are based in Vancouver but welcome members from anywhere. We meet by email and face to face. If you would like to help or to donate, please contact: josephine@rosecharities.org.

Why are these programs needed?

Our first priority after the tsunami was to provide emergency medical care, followed by psychological support and school counseling, for children traumatized by the event. Later, the focus changed to educational support as the children struggled to catch up lost school time. Two years after the tsunami, the civil war re-ignited adding new trauma and hardship to the community. The project expanded to include: care of refugees, post-conflict counseling and peace-building activities. The project is community based and has always been driven by the changing priorities of the population, especially the displaced families still living in makeshift camps.

In 2007, a micro-credit program was launched and continues to expand. Much of the success of this program is owed to the many volunteers, both Kalmunai residents and from overseas, who continue to donate their time and energy to helping this community recover and grow. In 2006 the program was awarded a 2-year development grant from CIDA to strengthen the Youth Programs for Peace. However, the organization could not exist without continued support from individual donors through Rose Charities Canada, USA and others.

Sri Lanka Counseling

Rose Charities began a child psychosocial counseling in Kalmunai 4 weeks after the 2004 tsunami. We developed a training program for Community Support Workers and established counseling in 19 schools in Kalmunai that reached over 10,000 children. Today, the Community Support Workers are still active in the community, working with families living in the camps. They deal with a wide range of issues including: family violence, abuse, alcoholism, poverty related issues, school dropouts and post war trauma.

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