CHA plays a coordinating role sourcing assistance for a number of vulnerable groups. Highlights of such activities undertaken during 2011 are given below.
- A forum on Child Protection challenges in Sri Lanka was conducted by Mr. Shan Senanayeka, Attorney at Law and Chairman for Foundation for Law and Justice attended by 20 Members Public Interest petition was lodged with HRC and free space in Daily Mirror,
- SL’s largest circulating daily to advocate for child rights, • CHA invited the district court judge of Point Pedro and facilitated a meeting in which the Judge emphasised the Police and GS to have close contacts to identify and report abuses to women and children;
- Orphanages in the Matara district were listed by CHA office and many were visited. Shortcomings were discussed with the district child probation offi cer Ms Nanayakkara for rectifi cation and support;
- CHA PS Consultant contacted 3 principals and focal points of Ladies College, Museaus College and Anula Vidyalaya to discuss lifeline projects targeting childrenand teachers;
- CHA arranged meeting with District Judge Point Pedro in which the judge stated that widows fall into those with infants and those with school going children. She stated that it was best to encourage self-employment;
- CHA District office Matara in partnership with Caritas Galle created a group of women who had earlier migrated to the Middle East. These women were subjected to hardships;
- Empowering Women – District office Hambantota identified the need to empower women and selected nearly 100 potential women leaders (community leaders) to empower them and in turn impart their knowledge to women in their respective villages;
- Stalls by NIMH, Methsewana and Salvation Army were displayed at a Sale at the Girl Guides HQ that was held on March 25th. Coordinated by IHR the above institutes were able to sell some of their finished products of household and decorativeitems.
- Training on Child Mental Health was carried out on identifying the need to selected school teachers in Divisional Secretariat of Hiniduma; Supporting Differently Abled Children – CHA continued its programme in providing educational assistance to diff erently abled children.
- IT programme for students of the deaf and blind school in Ratmalana is an ongoing project where students with an interpreter are provided IT basic training at CHA;
- Referrals were made to Family Planning Association to provide free counseling on reproductive health treated issues and Sahanaya Institute of Mental Health to further investigate for any mental health conditions and suggest means of support;
- CHA has profiled individual details of all long stay women inmates and handed over to Medical Staff ;
- Facilitating Vocational Training – A meeting to set up a vocational service to Unit 2 women at NIMH was held at CHA on March 4th at CHA. The idea of the “Elephant project” was initiated by VSO coordinator Ms. Marijke Halman. The 2nd meeting took place on March 23rd at NIMH where NPS staff was able to obtain the exact status of how the project would go. Product Marketing, Supplies was discussed and minuted. NPS staff was able to bring to Colombo some of the fi nished products by the patients to be sold at Girls Guides Sale on March 25th.
CHA/IHR continues to focus on the following:
- Eradication of “no date” cases of detainees,
- Source assistance to help inmates six months prior to release and provide advisory services post release for six months,
- Address miscarriage of justice of those who have suffered due to mistakes of lawyers, courts and lack of finances,
- Organising off line back office services with skilled human resources among inmates as they have begun in India.
- Human Rights Cases from Detentions camps – 25 Cases of Human Rights were received from the detentions camps. This was an outcome of a visit to Poonthottam camp in Vavuniya on 26th February. The contacts of CHA and IHR were shared among the detainees and requests ranging from Livelihood to Education were received. These inquiries were sent by families of victims residing in Vavuniya, Jaff na and Ampara districts. Legal issues were forward to IHR for further action. Two persons were released. CHA periodically contacts the families to keep them updated on the course of action being taken from Colombo.
Rehabilitees (Ex- Combatants)
CHA carried out a programme with ILO support for the war affected and rehabilitated youth.
- CHA has commissioned an Architect firm, developed low cost home options, convinced HNB and selected worker families to undertake new home options with a 10 year repayment period within the Kahawatte Group.
- Coaching Classes for A/L Students – CHA facilitated Coaching Classes for A/L Students with the support of Kahawatte Plantation management and staff of Westhall Maha Vidyalaya,.Kataboola. About 40 students representing Westhall M.V., Craighead No 1 T.V., and Kathiresan Central College in Nawalapitiya participated in this programme. 3 days of classes on Tamil Literature, Political Science and Geography were conducted by lecturers from University of Peradeniya.
- Books for Galamuduna Tamil Vidyalaya – Children from hundred Families of Kataboola estate receive their education through Galamuduna Tamil Vidyalaya. Seven teachers are in the school and children travel from as far as 8 kilometers to attend this school. CHA in liaison with Room to Read provided the books to this school.