The founder of Rachel’s Kids Development Fund is Dr. Rachel Navaneelan, a local dentist in Cornwall. Dr. Rachel initiated a charity auction and garden party held in her own backyard to raise funds to assist victims of the tsunami. The aim of the fundraiser was to bring awareness and to raise money to benefit underprivileged children in Sri Lanka, her native country. Some of these children were orphaned and/or displaced due to past ethnic disturbances and many others were orphaned and displaced due to the tsunami tragedy on December 26th, 2004.
Dr. Rachel had been financially contributing in the past to the best of her capability to support these children. It had been 4 months since the tsunami and the initial tsunami assistance had already faded and the children had been forgotten. Very little or no support had reached the children post tsunami. There were no social benefits or unemployment benefit programs in existence in Sri Lanka, children of parents who lost their livelihood to the tsunami were experiencing the same fate.
Dr. Rachel promised if the fundraiser proved successful, her intention was to make this an annual event where half the contribution would be made to local charities, mainly to benefit children in the community, and the remainder would continue to go towards projects initiated overseas.
Thanks to the compassion and generosity of the communities of Cornwall, SD&G and surrounding area, the event proved to be an enormous success. Dr. Rachel kept her promise. With volunteering efforts and the unrelenting support of our local community we continue to hold our signature “Annual Garden Party & Auction”, as well as our “Foster Program”. We’ve proudly witnessed a significant upsurge in financial contributions allowing us to create, develop and grow multiple programs targeting our local surroundings with emphasis on children with special needs, children with terminal illnesses as well as family support.
We are proud of what we’ve accomplished since 2004 and we will continue to strive to be the Community Resource for SD&G and surrounding areas.