Watching the distressing news about the economic crisis in Sri Lanka, early in 2022, a group of friends belonging to a Tamil book club, decided to help the needy in Sri Lanka. They approached us, the Manitha Neyam Trust, to implement the project.

Kaipugalla Tamil Vidyalayam in Pundaluoya was selected to help estate workers and families, their children in particular.

The SL government provides a free meal at the start of the school day in high poverty areas, such as estate schools. It used to pay Rs. 30 per child per day, which became inadequate due to inflation, where the cost rose to about Rs 60. We decided to provide extra funding to develop a small plot of land within the school premises into a vegetable garden, as a sustainable, long-term solution to meet the needs of the children.

We started the project “Annapurna” in September of 2022. MNT worked with Academy for Community Transformation (ACT) in Talawakelle to make sure the children get their food assistance and coordinate the activities to establish the vegetable plot.

The vegetable plot has started to take shape, producing cabbage, leeks, and other greens. The garden still needs more work, such as building a fence, improving the water supply system, etc.

We look forward to seeing how this project grows alongside the children it helps nourish. Many thanks to all of those involved to initiate this garden!