YOUR August peace mail from Sri lanka
My name is Sutharsan and I work with Act for Peace’s partner the Organisation for Elangai Refugees Rehabilitation (OfERR) in Sri Lanka. I would like to share the story of a man who is building a future for his family through your kind support.
War forced Vijayakanth and his wife and daughter to flee their village in Sri Lanka. The family initially moved within Sri Lanka seeking safety but, with no other option for safety, they eventually left and sought asylum in India in April 2008. While living there, Vijayakanth’s wife gave birth to two sons.
By 2013, the family felt it would be safe enough to return home to Sri Lanka, so they approached OfERR for assistance. With OfERR’s help, the family enrolled in the Voluntary Repatriation programme.
In June 2016 the family returned home to Sri Lanka. They arrived with next-to-nothing but OfERR assisted by enrolling their three children in school and Vijayakanth seized an opportunity to learn masonry and painting so he could provide an income for his family.
The family lived where they could afford – a dilapidated rental house in an unsafe neighbourhood. During the rainy season water would come in through leaks and the floors would flood. Fearing for his family’s safety Vijayakanth decided to move again.
Using their small amount of savings and with some support from relatives, he was able to purchase a good block of land. But there was no money left to build and the family were stuck in the rental house in a dangerous neighbourhood. Again, Vijayakanth reached out to OfERR for help.
OfERR understood his safety and security concerns and co-oordinated with the Sri Lankan government to get monetary assistance as part of the family’s re-integration. He used this to buy materials and is now building a family home.
Vijayakanth tells me: “I am so thankful to OfERR. They are with me for more than three years and guiding, accompanying and supporting my family. They have ensured my family’s safety and security, particularly my children’s. This will pave new dawn to our children.”
Thank you for your support,
Download this Peace Mail in pdf
Your Support is making a difference:
$22 can provide school stationery, a uniform, shoes and socks for a child to attend school.
$1,636 can provide financial support the construction of a shelter for a family who is repatriating to Sri Lanka.
There are events in history that bring about extraordinary changes for the better. One such historical and memorable event is the voluntary return of the refugees who had left their homeland, Sri Lanka, many years ago.
Currently there are more than one hundred thousand Sri Lankan refugees in India. Many are contemplating returning to their homeland to live in peace and freedom, and help in the rebuilding of their nation.
Returning refugees face many challenges including housing, employment, psycho-social care, and access to the health and education systems. OfERR, through your valuable support, is helping returnees to re-establish their lives by providing livelihood assistance. Through training sessions and material support, Act for Peace’s partner wants returnees to have sustainable livelihoods which provide a regular income. Welcome groups have also been set up to support new families by building connections and sharing knowledge of the local area.
Keep an eye out. You will soon receive a survey in the mail from Act for Peace. Your feedback is incredibly valuable, and we appreciate the time you take to complete and return the survey to us. Thank you.
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