Caritas Sri Lanka – SEDEC in coordination with Caritas Ratnapura – Sethmini will build 16 houses for the families affected by the 2016 flood and landslide in the Aranayake Divisional Secretariat Division, in the Kegalle district.These families were compelled to relocate from their original homes in 2016 due to the threat of landslides and floods and have been living in temporary shelter in the Dooldeniya village within the Aranayake DS Division.
Caritas Sri Lanka having considered the plight of these displaced families has established a partnership with Caritas Germany to construct 16 houses. The permanent shelter project is in the process of being planned following discussions with a consultant architect of Caritas Germany and relevant local officials of the Kegalle District Secretariat.
Complementing and adding value to the project a group of members of the Old Boys’ Association of the St. Joseph’s College, Colombo class of 1993 have committed to construct the toilets for the selected 16 families.
In order to kick start the construction process, Caritas Ratnapura- Sethmini together with Caritas Sri Lanka under the guidance of Rev. Fr. Sriyan Fernando, Director Sethmini, and Rev. Fr. Mahendra Gunetilleke, National Director mobilized a group of volunteers to help in the clearing the land at the new relocation site in Dooldeniya village on Saturday 22nd July 2017. About 70 volunteers including 10 Catholic Priests, 3 Buddhist Priests, members of local parish groups and the beneficiaries of this project participated in this Shramadana Campaign. Representatives of the local government authority including Mr. Z.A.M. Aisally, the Divisional Secretary of Aranayake were also present at the occasion.
The Divisional Secretary of Aranayake in his brief remarks stated that the government fully endorses the efforts which have been taken by Caritas and as part of their contributions; the government would provide electricity to the households.
9 Catholic Families and 7 Buddhist Families will benefit from this project and the project provides opportunities for promoting inter-religious harmony, peace, tolerance and co-existence among people, while mobilizing local resources and external donor support to assist the vulnerable families.