Pahamune House

 

Kurunegala

is the capital of the North Western Province, Sri Lanka, Sri Lanka and the Kurunegala District. Kurunegala was also an ancient royal capital for 50 years, from the end of the 13th century to the start of the 13th century. The town itself is a busy commercial and a transport hub. Kurunegala is located at the junction of several main roads linking to other important parts of the country. It is situated about 94 km from Colombo, and 42 km from Kandy.
Located at an altitude of 116 meters above sea level, Kurunegala is surrounded by coconut plantations and rubber estates. There are eight very noticeable large rocks that encircle and dominate the town. Kurunegala’s rocks rise from the plain below and have characteristic names, six of which come from the animals that they are imagined to represent. The largest among them is Ethagala or the “Elephant Rock” reaches 325 meters. The shape resembles an Elephant.

Tsunami Disaster
At 0059 GMT on 26 December 2004, a magnitude 9.3 earthquake ripped apart the seafloor off the coast of northwest Sumatra.
Over 100 years of accumulated stress was released in the second biggest earthquake in recorded history. It unleashed a devastating tsunami that travelled thousands of kilometres across the Indian Ocean, taking the lives of more than 200,000 people in countries as far apart as Indonesia, the Maldives, Sri Lanka and Somalia.
The first wave hit Sri Lanka with no recede and no warning. The waves, up to six of them, weighing over 100 billion tonnes, rushed inland like a giant tide. As they hit Sri Lanka’s southern tip, they began to change direction, an effect called refraction. The part of a wave closest to the shore slowed down in the shallow water, leaving the outer part, travelling at faster speeds, to bend around the island. The southwest coast of Sri Lanka, the side that should have been safe, was suddenly in the waves’ direct line.
Cities such as Galle were destroyed; over 4,000 people died in this region alone.
The waves carried on further north to India, where they killed 10,000 people.

PAHAMUNE HOUSE – Sri Lanka

Pahamune Hostel is a 40,000 sq building set in 6 acres of land. It is located in the North Western Province of Sri Lanka, approximately 2 hours from Colombo City. The land is substantial enough for further outbuildings and playground.
The above-mentioned building has been made available for the aim set out above, by the AMMS Trust Foundation; the main objectives of the foundation are educational. The events of 26th December 2004, has transformed the use of Pahamune House from an educational institute into a hostel/centre of education for children displaced by the Tsunami.

The first 50 children following the Tsunami arrived at Pahamune House on the 17th of January 2005. They arrived, after a 9-hour journey some accompanied by surviving parents or guardians. All of these children were from the East of the Country, namely Batticalo, which is one of the worst affected areas in the island. (Due to its direct angle to Indonesia). This number of children will rise to 300 during 2005. On arrival the children are provided with beds, clean clothes, and food. All the children were given a medical check up by a local doctor. Despite the tragedy that has affected their lives so significantly, the majority of the children were in good spirits and was confirmed by a group of western trauma specialists who visited Pahamune House.

Some of the Children that arrived at the House

The aim of the organization was to provide these children with hope for the future and a foundation for a productive and fulfilling life. This they hoped to achieve by giving them a secure home and a 1st class education. This was to be done by:

  • Housing the children in the present Pahamune Hostel
  • The construction of a new school for the 300 children
  • The construction of a Multipurpose Hall.  To comprise of Dining Hall, Kitchen and Study Hall to facilitate the 300 displaced children.

TOUCH raised the funds to build the Dining Hall / Study Hall
All TOUCH Groups in Dublin, Kildare, Offaly and Meath worked together to raise this money

In July 2005 TOUCH representatives visited Pahamune house to see the project. Having been satisfied that the project was operating as TOUCH had been informed they handed over funds to start the construction of the Multipurpose Hall. When suitable progress on the building has been made TOUCH would then transfer the remaining funds.
It was hoped that the project would be finished in 2007

All involved in TOUCH can be so proud for being part of this project as there are over 150 orphans living and being taken care of in this new building.
This will now allow the college to get back to its original purpose set out by the AMMS Trust.
The children are so happy to have their new permanent home.

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