What we do

Our integrated focus

At the heart of everything we are called to do are three foundational elements of being Catholic, Family focused and Community based in our programmes of disaster relief, development and advocacy.

  • First, we are Catholic. Motivated by our faith in Jesus Christ, Caritas serves the poorest of the poor, vulnerable and the marginalized regardless of race, religion, caste or gender.
  • Secondly, Family focus prioritizes children, youth, adults and the elderly and empowers them together with their communities to improve their well-being.
  • Finally, our work is community-based, which means that Caritas’ primary role in individuals, families and communities is to encourage them through “animation” and walk in “solidarity” in their efforts alongside others – communities, organisations, agencies, government & religious institutions with development of the ‘whole person’ as our primary focus.

Guiding Principles

The guiding principles that inspire our work are based on the Catholic Social Teaching

Dignity of the Human Person

We believe in the intrinsic dignity and equality of every human person and the sacredness of human life, from conception to natural death. We categorically reject the exclusion of the poor, disabled and elderly people, or any other vulnerable members of our human family.

Mercy and Compassion

We are compelled to take action to alleviate misery and pain. Mercy is a Gospel value that is central to the message of Jesus, leading those who work for Caritas to be loving and compassionate.

Formation of the Heart

We believe that “ those who work for the Church’s charitable organizations must be distinguished by the fact that they dedicate themselves to others with heartfelt concern, enabling them to experience the richness of their humanity. Consequently, in addition to their necessary professional training, these charity workers need a ‘formation of the heart ”.

Equal Opportunities and Responsibilities

We are committed to promoting equal rights and responsibilities of men and women.

Preferential Option for the Poor

We combat dehumanizing poverty that deprives people of their dignity and promote the rights of poor and vulnerable people. We Caritas accompany them in building a better world for all.

Universal Destination of Goods of the Earth

We work to transform economic, social, political, and cultural structures that are opposed to a just society. We work to change this world into one where all can share in the gifts of creation and enjoy basic rights.


We are committed to solidarity among all peoples, seeing the world through the eyes of the poor, and recognizing the interdependence of the human family. We will always strive to work for the common good.

Subsidiarity & Cooperation

We seek to work together across the confederation when a united approach can increase effectiveness and advance our common vision. We recognize the local autonomy of each organization.


We believe the earth and its resources are entrusted to all human kind. As true stewards of creation, Caritas members seek to act and inspire others to act in an environmentally sustainable way, so that nature will be preserved for future generations.

Strategic priorities

Caritas Sri Lanka’s Strategic Priorities for the period 2022– 2025

Strategic Priority 1: Promote sustainable integral human development through community empowerment

- Protection mainstreaming
- Child protection & wellbeing
- Ending domestic violence
- Ending violence against women and girls
- Rights of the different-abled
- Measuring well-being & protection impact
- Income generation
- Skills development & vocational training Small & Medium   Enterprise development
- Measuring sustainable livelihoods impact

Strategic Priority 2: Build capacity for disaster preparedness, risk reduction, mitigation and response

- DRR programs
- Disaster risk analysis
- Community-based disaster preparedness planning
- Emergency response
- Recovery, and long term development

Strategic Priority 3: Foster sustained dialogue for justice and peace

- Mitigating ethnoreligious intolerance & tensions
- Promotion of community co-existence
-Leadership development and knowledge-based communities
- Issue-based community advocacy Strengthening local   governance and access to efficient public services
- Measuring community transformation impact

Strategic Priority 4: Promote sustainable agriculture, ecological justice & influence climate change adaptation

- Food security
- Mainstream Climate Change Adaptation measures across all relevant programs
- Advocacy for the development, implementation, and enforcement of environmental laws,
regulations, and policies.
- Community based programs and approaches for environmental health and justice

Strategic Priority 5: Institutional development and capacity strengthening

The organizational development for change management with a concern to developing its resource base and the development of human resources to effectively promote social change through its programs is a strategic concern with the proliferation of the need of concrete planning and effective management of organizational resources

Modes of Intervention


Given our primary concern to address poverty causes, the susceptibility of the country to natural disasters and the emergence of issues due to injustice & inequality adversely affecting the poor, the vulnerable and the marginalized populations, emphasis will be placed on the following Modes of Intervention and the integration of same in our programming across all sectors

  • Community based integral human development addressing root causes of poverty
  • Rights based advocacy and influence for change
  • Community based disaster risk reduction and response

Sector Priorities & Cross-Cutting Themes


Caritas Sri Lanka will prioritise the following key sectors and cross-cutting themes, nationally, whilst retaining the flexibility for the respective Diocesan Centres to consider other important sectors and cross-cutting thematic areas deemed critical in meeting their aspirations of those whom we serve

Priority Sectors

  1. Economic Development
  2. Justice, Peace Building & Reconciliation
  3. Disaster Preparedness & Resilience
  4. Re-settlement & Livelihood Development
  5. Safe Labour Migration
  6. Environmental Protection

Cross-cutting Themes

  1. Climate Change Adaptation
  2. Sustainable Agriculture & Food Security
  3. Permanent Shelter
  4. Health, Water & Sanitation
  5. Youth Development
  6. Education