Killinochchi was at the heart of the civil war for many years in Sri Lanka. Ravaged by years of conflict, the people who live here understand what it is to suffer. No one was immune to the cruelty of war, displacement and loss.
Now the conflict is over, people are attempting to pick up the pieces of their lives and start over. This is a long-term process of recovery. At Child Action Lanka, we want to play a part in enabling such change. We want see transformation and reconciliation for the next generation in Killinochchi and to give them opportunities to break the cycle of poverty through education, support and counselling and vocational training.
In 2012 we opened an After School Centre on the outskirts of Killinochchi town. Children and young people come daily to have English, computer and Sinhala classes, play sports and have a safe place to have fun. All the children are from families who have suffered terribly from the war, and to have this kind of opportunity helps them to have hope of a more positive future.
When we started, the children were so happy to have a place to come and learn that they asked if we could start lessons and teaching at 5.30am! They are so excited to be have the opportunity and possibility to change the outcome of their own lives and consequently that of their families and community. A chance to see genuine 'transformation for the next generation'.