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Ladani Orphanage

 

Katuneriya

This is located in the Chilaw District of Sri Lanka north of Colombo on the western Coast.

Ladani

This is a journey that started in humble beginnings and true love for the orphaned and destitute children. This was possible thanks to the magnanimity of our benefactors who extend their hands to us from every part of the world. An Approved charitable organization run purely from the funds received from ordinary people who has got a kind heart and committed to help in some small way to bring joy and happiness to the children which was denied to them for no fault of theirs.

Ladani is the brainchild of Rev. Neville Coonghe. On meeting Fr. Neville in Sri Lanka and having seen the good work he has been doing with his goal in life to help and support the Children through to adulthood. So as a charity TOUCH Ireland made the decision to give our support to Ladani and have now set up a Child Sponsorship Scheme for two of the homes as well as setting up their ‘Marching Band’ and providing on going support for them.

The children at the six homes spread over Sri-Lanka, are aged between 3 years and 18 years old. From their first day they become part of the Group, sharing with the other children the daily duties such as cleaning, cooking and general work. Even though they own nothing they are brought up in a happy environment and are always willing to give a free smile.

Today the six homes look after over 250 children. In addition to the formal education provided by state schools, teachers conduct classes in aesthetic studies such as dancing, music and art at the individual homes.

Katuneriya Home

 

This is the first home started by Ladani and is one that is sponsored by TOUCH Ireland. In fact this was the birth place of Ladani. Started in May 1985 with five children, has grown now to provide shelter for 42 children. There are 27 girls and 15 boys living in this home. Their ages are between 6 years and 16 years. All attend schooling and are in grade 1 to 11.

 

Ladani Orphanage 2007
We spent two days in Sri Lanka visiting the Ladani Orphanage in Negombo 30Km north of Colombo.
As can be seen from the photos below the children are well taken care of but need on going funding for their care and education. Also their accommodation while being secure is fairly basic and could do with updating.
A Sri Lankan Priest, Fr. Neville and Sr. Monica coordinate the Home. The orphanage is managed by Anita a Sri Lankan woman.
On our visit to them we bought a Music Centre and CDs as all they had was a very old small tape recorder. As can be seen below it was a great success and not for the first time on a trip would we understand the value of music for children. This allowed them to open up to us so much more than the previous day and though their English was poor we had great fun with them.
At this time there are over 50 children in the home

Ladani Orphanage 2008
Four of our days in Sri Lanka were spent visiting the Ladani Orphanage in Negombo.
We visited them to hand over sponsorship money from the Law Library TOUCH Ireland Group. It was great to see that the Music centre that we bought for them last year was still providing the children with hours of entertainment.
This visit we asked the older children what we might give them as a present and to our great surprise the said a “Marching Band Kit”. It appears that two other orphanages run by the Ladani Institute have these kits and our children felt left out. But no longer!

On a visit to Colombo we purchased a “Marching Band Kit” for the children. Needless to say there was great excitement when we presented the children with the kit.

We also had the opportunity to take the children to the Local Cinema for a day out with Popcorn and drinks. For most of the children they had never had this experience.

Ladani Orphanage 2009
On the trip last year TOUCH Ireland had bought equipment through donations for the children to set up their own band e.g.: drums, symbols and harmonicas.
Our aim was to take the children out for a day and also to arrange to buy material for uniforms for the new TOUCH band. This we were able to do as a result of donations from people at home.

On Wednesday 28th November we visited the children in Ladani, having previously arranged the day before to take the children out for the day so after lunch we all went off to the cinema in Negombo, all 60 children of all ages and staff.
The excitement was tremendous as not only were they going to the cinema but they had been given a half day off school. The last time they were at the Cinema was when we visited last year.
The film was in the native Senegalese language so it was a little difficult for us to understand but we shared in the children’s happiness and laughter and even tears at some stage. There were drinks and cake for everyone at the interval and plenty of fun.
Our trip to buy the material was successful and some of the children came with us to pick the colour and type. The uniforms were made locally and really make the band professional looking.
The following day we met with Fr. Neville who is the Founder and Director of Ladani Institutes. We were then treated to a recital by the band and plenty of singing and dancing.

Ladani Orphanage 2011
As always we met up with Fr. Neville and Sr. Monica who coordinates our Child Sponsorship scheme. It was great to catch up with them and to find out how the country is now after the war with the Tamil Tigers. He explained that the conflict had left a large amount of orphans in the Northern part of the country and he was now building a new home there for the children. He asked if TOUCH Ireland would assist in building a Skills Training centre for children there to assist him. We said we would look at this next year in a new round of projects we hope to fund and see if we can find someone to fund this project.

After our meeting we proceeded to Kateruniya where there are now 60 orphaned children, boys and girls on our child sponsorship.
We were greeted by the TOUCH Band and are now one of the best bands in the area or so we are told, they were very good and it was great to see them in their uniforms.

Over the next six days we made three visits to the home to see the children and do reports/photos for the sponsorship scheme. We made what is now our customary trip to the cinema with the children and were told the last time they went was with us two years ago. So needless to say there was great excitement going to the native film which as usual we wouldn’t have a clue what it was about but the children did. After a two and a half hour journey we arrived at the cinema. We had to leave the cinema twice and take refuge under a fan in the manager’s office due to nearly fainting with the heat but no such problem for the children. They enjoyed their drinks and popcorn and needless to say the film.
On our third and final visit we purchased a DVD player for the home and lots of films from funds given to us by well wishers on our trip.

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