THE GLOBAL VOLUNTEERING NETWORK
Kandy, the famed hill capital of Sri Lanka, is considered among the most beautiful cities in the country, indeed the world. It will also be the backdrop of one of the most ambitious projects launched by MegaReach. Having reached there on 31st July 2015, the tour party will host the “champions of peace” from the Sinhala and Tamil host communities of Deegalla and Nainathivu respectively, who will be transported to, and accommodated in, Kandy through a programme sponsored by MegaReach over 01st and 02nd August 2015.
The meeting of the representatives of the two communities will be centred on a wheelchair donation ceremony for the needy immobilised persons at the Kandy Kataragama Devalaya, a place of worship revered by Buddhists and Hindus alike. We have already collected sufficient funds to donate 12 wheelchairs in collaboration with a local organisation that has previously donated in excess of 300 wheelchairs: the Nishan Dias Gunasekera Organsiation. This was made possible due to the incredible generosity of a group of fourth year medical students, who organised a day-long peer-teaching event on 26th April 2015 to discuss 100 common problems in medicine, which was attended by over 100 students from Exeter, Peninsula and Plymouth Medical Schools. This event raised a total of £662. Of this £540 were spent to purchase the 12 aforementioned wheelchairs, with the remaining £122 allocated towards a £500 target, being raised for the Kaithady Children's home.
We hope this ceremony of reconciliation, will help cement friendshipships between the representatives of the two communities from Deegalla and Nainathivu, who would almost certainly never have met otherwise. It would also mean that they will be introduced to MARDiTRePers from other parts of the country, who would also be invited to this event. We will then facilitate discussions aimed at identifying mutually beneficial ventures that the two communities could engage in over the longer-term. When such initiatives are identified, MegaReach will seek the support of donors who have volunteered their expertise through this site, in order to ensure their successful completion.
We are particularly excited by the prospect of testing this model for reconciliation among two specific communities, as it may then be used with similar demographics in the future. Here too, instead of engaging at an abstract level, MegaReach will be seeking to make a real difference to the lives of real people from two very specific communities. If you have any suggestions, comments or indeed would like to volunteer your support for the projects identified at Deegalla, Kandy and Nainathivu, please do so through the links available under relevant options in the “Contact” section.