Epiphany Trust’s work in Sri Lanka started in 2000 with support for the special school for children with learning disabilities in Welimada, in the tea plantation region. Boosted by the Trust’s appeal for the victims on the December 2004 tsunami 2005 saw the establishment of Child Action Lanka the Trust’s ‘in country’ partner and the opening up of three new projects: the centre for street children in Kandy, the nursery and pre-school in Kaliniya, and the ‘Little Lambs’ pre-school at Blackpool junction in the tea plantation region around Nuwara Eliya.
After more than 25 years, and 70,000 deaths, the civil war ended in June 2009, when government forces seized the last area controlled by the LTTE (Tamil Tigers). Since then opportunities have opened up for Child Action Lanka to work amongst children and young people who have suffered deprivation, loss and trauma as a result of the war. In 2012 two new projects started in the war devastated towns of Kilinochchi in the north and Batticaloa on the east coast.
Deborah Endirisinghe from Kandy is the Founder/Director of Child Action Lanka and has presided over a number of remarkable initiatives amongst some of the poorest and most disadvantaged communities in Sri Lanka. Her mission has been to empower the street community through child care and education, housing, health, micro credit programmes, vocational and other training, creating self sufficiency and independence.