OUR ANNUAL VISIT
A small contingent of volunteers accompany Dr. Navaneelan on her annual visit to Sri Lanka to engage in humanitarian service. This years trip was from Feb 9 – 20, 2023.
No money donated or raised by our organization goes towards expenses for our volunteer travel costs. The expenses incurred during the travels are funded privately by Dr. Navaneelan. Your complete donation goes directly to help improve the lives of children in Sri Lanka.
During this trip the volunteers were able to distribute
- 800 School bags filled with school supplies
- 515 Food Parcels
- 500 Rachel’s Kids Sun Hats
- 250 Stuffed Animals donated by PetSmart Cornwall
- 150 Pairs of Sunglasses
- 150 Assorted Children’s Toys
- 1400 Packages of Cookies
- 215 Individual Milk Cartons
- 60 Bedsheet Sets
- 60 Pillows
- 120 Pillowcases
- 120 Towels
- 60 Mosquito Nets
- 120 Pairs of Flip Flops
- Immeasurable Joy to these children and their families.
Additionally 165 School Children at Mount Carmel School received a $75 Educational Sponsorship for additional tutoring.
The service work is carried out in the following locations:
Mount Carmel Parish is Rachel’s Kids longest running project in Sri Lanka. This year marks it’s 13th year in participation. Located in the outskirts of Colombo this church/parish has attendees from some of the poorest families. There are a total of 165 children, and over the years we have seen children graduate out of our program and either go to college, university or some form of skill training. This year we distributed school bags with school supplies, sun hats, care packages, and food parcels to the families. We also provide a $75 Eduction Sponsorship to each student.
Omanthai school is located in a small town in northern Sri Lanka. This school was privately built by Dr. Navaneelan in 2014 and educates students from kindergarten to Grade 5. Many of these children are from families that were displaced by the civil war. As more and more people return to the area, the number of students continue to rise. Currently there are 75 students enrolled and this school is managed by nuns. School bags and supplies, stuffed animals, sunglasses and sun hats were distributed. The teachers at the school are given some assistance to supplement their modest monthly salary. A recently constructed washroom and sunshade are being enjoyed by all.
Moolai School is located in northern Sri Lanka. This is another school that was privately built by Dr. Navaneelan in 2008. As the number of children grew, Rachel’s Kids built two extensions, one in 2014 and one in 2016. The parents of some of the children attending this school volunteered their time to provide labour during these renovations. This year we provided the 75 children currently in attendance with school supplies, school bags, and stuffed animals, sunglasses, and various small toys. The teachers in this school are also given some assistance to supplement their salary. Cookies and milk were also distributed making it a very festive day!
St. Roche School is located in Jaffna in the northern part of Sri Lanka. The children at this school are from some of the poorest families and the parents of these children who attend this school are either street sweepers or drain cleaners. They are considered low caste and sadly are discriminated and excluded from other schools. Many of them walk several kilometres to school, sometimes with no shoes. As the parents leave their homes very early in the morning, the children are left to tend for themselves and hence come to school with no breakfast. There was in existence some funding by a third party to cook some food in a make-shift kitchen, which recently has been condemned by the health department. Rachel’s Kids has stepped up to renovate this kitchen and to provide a small water tank so these children could be fed and have clean drinking water. This year we distributed 115 school bags, school supplies, care packages, sun hats and food parcels which included rice, lentils, milk powder, oil, cookies, and sugar.
Good Shepherd Orphanage , also located in northern Sri Lanka is a haven to a group of 60 girls and is managed by 3 nuns. They girls are here as wards of the court for their protection. The girls living at the orphanage range from the age of 5 to 18.
This year each girls received a new bed sheet set, 2 new pillowcases, a new pillow, 2 new towels and two pairs of flip flops. As well some additional chairs were purchases for their dining area.
St. Mary’s Rec Centre and Study Hall is our newest project and is situated in the central south of Sri Lanka. This is an area on the outskirts of Ratnapura and people in this area are mainly workers at the surrounding tea plantations. As history goes, these workers have always been very poorly paid and as a result their children tend to drop out of school to seek employment. This centre is a haven for the children in this area to gather, participate in study activities, games and feel safe. 130 school bags filled with school supplies, sunhats cookies were distributed as well as some stuffed animals for the younger children and a food parcel for each family. They would like to add a washroom to the facility and some ceiling fans in the coming year if funding can be secured.