Tuesday, 29 July 2014

July 2014 Week 2 Blog

One of the highlights of our trips to Sri Lanka is taking the girls from the orphanage to the beach for the day. However, because it was Ramadan we were unable to do this so we visited the orphanage instead.  They treated us to a programme of dancing, singing and comic sketches, one of the funniest being a Della and Don tribute act, which was hilarious and scarily accurate!  We gave each of the girls some material to make dresses for Eid.
The Della and Don tribute act
Handing out Eid gifts
Receiving Mehndi from the girls at the orphanage
Without Father Mahendra, whom Della and Don met early in 2005, many of our projects would not have gotten off the ground.  Due to his heart surgery last year, we had not seen him for some time and so we were delighted to be able to visit him in the Archbishop's Residence, and to see him looking happy and well.

Don, Father Mahendra and Della
The generosity of our friends means that whenever we come to Sri Lanka we have clothes, shoes and toys to distribute in our village.  Word spreads quickly, and it is an effort to manage the resulting enthusiastic surge of people that suddenly appears. 
Clothes distribution
The FODAD team! 
On Sunday we visited Doreen.  We have known Doreen for 6 years, as she is the mother of two boys we support, one of whom is now completing an apprenticeship in an air-conditioning firm and the other who is at our school.  Doreen met with a tragic accident 18 months ago when she was run over by a three-wheeler.  As a result, she had a leg amputated.  We support her as there is no welfare available in Sri Lanka.  Her refusal to indulge in self-pity, her constant smile and her devotion to her children is truly humbling and extraordinary.
Doreen and her children 
Yesterday we visited Kukuleganga, which is an extremely remote area in the heart of the jungle, where the Jungle Nursery we support with uniforms, bags, shoes and books is located.  We had been invited to attend their Perahera by the Buddhist monk we have known for some years, and who divides his time between Mount Lavinia and Kukuleganga.  The children, parents and teachers and put a tremendous amount of effort into making imaginative costume and decorations.  One boy was dressed as a demon, and was so realistic that he frightened many of the other children. 

The demon! 
Perahera procession
Today (Tuesday), the kids from the Children's Home came to the beach in Mount Lavinia for the day. It was the third time we had done this and we were told they were so excited about coming that they barely slept the night before.  They had even made their own kites, and drawn beautiful thank-you cards which were very moving.  As on the two previous occasions, we had lots of fun and a lovely meal. 

Meal time

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