Author Archives: admin

Student Sponsorship

Posted on by Jackie

DSC_9948SRI would like to extend a big thank you to Alex Hayes-Griffin and Michaela Frickleton for their annual sponsorship of 10 students in the Hambantota educational zone.

All the students that Alex and Michaela are supporting come from low income families and have to face additional challenges ranging from educational to medical.

Pictured right are myself and project officer, Mr Teddy, with Asan Nirodaka who has had to undergo multiple operations.

Piano Masterclass

Posted on by admin

Davi'ds masterclass, Sri Dewananda School

Music teachers based around Hambantota received an immersion into Western piano music in December when London-based concert pianist, David Dean, visited Tissamaharama.

David gave a masterclass on the history of piano music from the Baroque through to the modern era before teaching a classical piece to a group of just under 20 teachers.

Sri Dewananda SchoolIn the afternoon, he also performed a special concert for the students at Sri Dewananda School, where the masterclass had been held.

He played a mix of traditional classical pieces such as Beethoven’s Fur Elise, which signals the arrival of the bread van in Sri Lanka, plus nursery rhymes for the younger children such as Twinkle Twinkle Little Star.

SRI noted that the song, which got everyone tapping their feet the most, was “I wan’na be like you” from the Jungle Book.

HSBC Community Clothing

Posted on by Jackie

Kande Viharaya TempleHSBC donated boxes of unused branch uniforms to SRI this autumn as part of its commitment to re-cycling within its Corporate Social Responsibility strategy.

We worked with local village officials and the chief priest at Kande Viharaya Temple to find families from the surrounding villages that would benefit from the clothing.

Kande Viharaya Temple

 

The Reverend Kadapana Gunananda Thero arranged a handing over ceremony at the temple for about 170 families in late November.

Some of the clothing also went to Nadigamwila School to be used by the school band.

SRI would like to thank HSBC’s Stuart Tait for coming over from Hong Kong to attend the ceremony and visit the school.Kande Viharaya Temple

He was joined by Stuart Rogers and Dilini Fernando from HSBC Colombo who also drove down for the day.

 

KWT Science Lab Renovation

Posted on by jackie

Mary's Science LabThe generosity of British scientist Mary Sweeney lives on at Kawantissapura School thanks to a bequest in her will.

Mary was a researcher into Huntington’s disease based in the neurogenetics unit at University College London.

She was also a friend of SRI for many years before she died of cancer in 2017.

She had previously sponsored a young student who also tragically died of the same disease a few years earlier.

Mary's Science Lab

Thanks to her kindness and generosity, we were able to renovate and refurbish a science lab in her name at Kawantissapura School, which lies on the main Tissa to Katharagama Road.

The lab was completely re-modeled, leading to a new concrete floor and tiling, plus a proper ceiling for the first time.

The children love it and we hope that having a well-fitted science lab will inspire them to follow in Mary’s footsteps and become scientists too.

Shangri-La Garage Sale

Posted on by Jackie

Shangri La garage sale Q4 2The Shangri-La Golf Resort and Spa in Hambantota held another of its quarterly garage sales in December.

This time the hotel raised Rs68,020 towards a school library renovation fund after selling off lost and found items.

Thanks to the hotel’s great efforts over the past couple of years, SRI is now close to raising the full amount to renovate Madavalana School Library.

Sumudu Pre-School Sponsorship

Posted on by Jaya

Sumudu Pre-schoolA big thanks once again to Cate Thomas, her partner Ron Sidell and her brother John Skutsch for renewing their annual sponsorship of one of the teachers at Sumudu pre-school in Lunugamvehera.

The Montessori school, which they built nine years ago continues to thrive thanks to their ongoing investment.

The school now has 25 students, overseen by one teacher and one assistant.

This November I also attended their annual show.

MCCC Certificate Ceremony

Posted on by Tharindu

MCCC Certificate CeremonyCongratulations to all the students who passed the Microsoft Office Certificate Course this autumn.

The students from Community Classes LIX and LX were all post A-level students who studied the three month course while waiting for their results, which were due December.

SRI Director, Jonathan Back, helped to hand out certificates to students who were able to attend the awards ceremony.

MCCC IT Camp

Posted on by Tharindu

MCCC IT CampThis November we held an IT camp for students about to sit their computer O-level the following month.

About 100 students from the area participated in the one-day intensive teach-in, which was run by their teachers and the MCCC’s training staff.

We broke the day up with morning coffee, lunch and afternoon tea, all of which was made by possible by HSBC’s funding of the centre.

 

Human Elephant Conflict – Eruwewa

Posted on by Jaya

Jaya, Dr FernandoI travelled to Eruwewa village in North Central Province this October with Dr Fernando Prithiviraj, Sri Lanka’s foremost elephant conservationist.

We were there for the opening of an electric fence around the village, which has grown up on the transit point for elephants in the surrounding area.

Dr Fernando provided the materials for the fence, which the villagers will maintain themselves.

I then gave a talk on human elephant conflict to help the villagers co-exist with the local elephant population.

HSBC Employment Skills

Posted on by Jackie

DSC_9107The NGO’s flagship project received a big boost this September thanks to HSBC, which is sponsoring it for one year.

The bank’s donation covers all the salaries and running costs of the Mahasenpura Community Computer Centre, plus its outreach work.

The centre is located in Mahasenpura School, but is open seven days a week and caters to a wide range of students of all ages.

Many are O-level and A-level leavers who come to the centre for three months while they are waiting for their exam results. They use this time to boost their IT skills by studying for the Microsoft Office Certificate Course.

HSBC’s funding also includes a budget to fix computers at other schools and undertake a number of one-off events and programmes including an employment skills seminar, a field visit to Colombo and a two-day IT camp for O-level students.

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