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SRI LANKA: Education programs launched

Salesian missionaries in the coastal ungalpitiya, Sri Lanka, are offering free after-school course

New initiative in response to challenges faced by schools


(MissionNewswire) Salesian missionaries in the coastal community of Dungalpitiya, Sri Lanka, are offering free after-school courses, vocational training, and leadership and skill development programs. This new initiative comes in response to the challenges faced by schools in the region and is supported by the Salesian Mission Office in Madrid.

The local population is largely dependent on the sea for their livelihood. While the area has five state schools, the schools do not have adequate infrastructure or sufficient staff. Most of the students come poor families and rely on the education offered there. These are the students that need the most support.

The programs are aiming to reach the whole family to aid in the educational development of all. A Salesian noted, “The educational programs will raise awareness and involve students’ parents and the elderly population, initiating paths of emancipation for women and the elderly through self-employment, the promotion of children’s rights, and community engagement.”

The Salesian added, “Empowering children through education and the development of life skills is not enough unless the family is also conducive to supporting and cultivating the motivation for growth.”

Sri Lanka has suffered a long civil war that ended in 2009, two tsunamis in the past 13 years, and a deadly dengue crisis. Nine out of 10 poor people in Sri Lanka live in rural areas, according to the World Bank. More than 40% of the country’s rural poor are small-scale farmers. Farm production is often hampered by neglect and low investment levels resulting from poor financial services and limited technology.

Sri Lankans are affected by a significant lack of infrastructure including roads, electricity, irrigation systems and communication channels. In several areas of the country, seven out of 10 people have no access to electricity and almost half of the population does not have access to safe drinking water. Malnutrition among children is also common.



ANS Photo (usage permissions and guidelines must be requested from ANS)

ANS – Sri Lanka – Empowerment Project for Families, Women and the Elderly and Promotion of Children’s Rights

Salesian Missions – Sri Lanka

World Bank – Sri Lanka

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