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Sri Lanka Unites Reconciliation Centers
Our vision through these centers is to be tangibly present in every district and be a hub for education, entrepreneurship and inspire youth to play an active role in promoting reconciliation and countering violent extremism.
If reconciliation, justice, and equality are to be realized in Sri Lanka, it has to be a movement that is wide spread. Colombo and the main cities are not sufficient to promote the message of peace and experience sustainable results. The grassroots are crucial and having a presence in being an influential voice in the most rural regions of every district is essential.
We believe in becoming one with the community we serve. We have seen the power of learning from the community, living among them, serving them to be best of our ability
These relationships that have grown over years give us great opportunities to challenge their inherited prejudices across ethnic and religious lines and replace them with friendship and relationship with other communities though our reconciliation centers in other regions.
We aim to be a hub for education, entrepreneurship and inspire youth to play an active role in promoting reconciliation and countering violent extremism.
These centers provide full scholarships for Diplomas in Business Entrepreneurship, Information Technology and English. These centers become a community center for the broader community and trains youth in the community on peace building and nonviolence.
We look to create various career guidance and vocational training workshops to help increase the employability of youth in these communities. Connect reconciliation center with other centers with different ethnic and religious communities.
Connect Villages Together
The predominantly Sinhalese center in the south Skype calls their Tamil speaking counterparts at the Nuwara-Eliya Center in the Central Province.
The centers are supported by an advisory board with leaders from each community
Mullaitivu RC Advisory Board Members
(Left to Right Standing -Mr.S.Varatharajan, Mr.S.Yogeswaran, Mr.V.Kamalakanthan, Mr.S.Sawahir, Mr.S.Sivakumar, Mr.R.Suthaskaran.
Left to Right Sitting – Mrs.Mary Regina.S, Mrs.Sumathy.S, Miss.S.Rajaledsumy, Mr.S.Rajah, Mr.K.Thavarasa.)
Student Initiated Businesses
Following a course in entrepreneurship, many students have gone on to start their own businesses. Some girls have gone on to become seamstresses who successfully secure large orders of uniforms etc. form companies by using the acquired skills in marketing and branding.
Outreach To Schools
The following photos are from Mullaitivu (left) and Matara (right) where school students are engaging with the centers on programs to raise awareness of peaceful co-existence.
One of the most important programs of the Nuwara-Eliya center Is the initative taken to learn about another’s culture through food! The students get together and cook meals of different cultures at the center and discuss the differences in cultural practices.
Similarly, the staff and students take turns to visit different places of worship of other religions. It’s an insightful practical experience for students.
Art for Reconciliation
The Kalumunai center has specialized a series of programs on using art for reconciliation to engage students with diverse interest, with the topic of peace and reconciliation.