“Stories may come from different parts of the world, but there’s a unified sense of urgency when the NEED relates to primary resources, such as access to clean water.
This is the story of Shaan Correa, a social entrepreneur in Sri Lanka that I personally had the opportunity to meet last year. And this is part of her amazing work with Awakening Lanka / Appé Lanka at the community of Poonakary, Sri Lanka.”
My daughter asked me some very pertinent questions in April this year.
“Amma, why did Appé Lanka give bikes to school children before they gave water”?
“Why, did you give solar home systems to one cluster village and identify another 1000 homes that did not have energy, before you addressed the issue of water?”
“Why did you start a Sport for Unity, and an Art and Drama for unity initiative or train counsellors to work in the schools in Poonakary dealing with issues like PTSD before giving water?”
“Why did you launch the English for All program hoping to teach students an international language? “Isn’t water more important than anything else? Shouldn’t Appé Lanka have dealt with the water issue first”.
I thought about it and realized she was right. Why hadn’t Appé Lanka given heed to one of the most important needs – water?
I have been working in Poonakary for four years. I had heard comments like “Shaan, you can’t stay in Poonakary you will have to stay in Kilinochchi there is no usable water”. I had seen water bowsers distribute water when we were conducting our drama and art workshops or installing solar panels, I have had conversations with villagers who told me that during the rainy season when bowsers couldn’t reach them they collected rain water in plastic containers, but the fact that there was no usable water went over my head for far too long a time.
Now looking back, I think it was something I could not conceive of or wanted to accept. How could there be no usable water in a country like Sri Lanka especially in Poonakary which means “Village of Flowers”.
The “No usable water” situation started bugging me, irking me. Every time I opened a tap, or filled the kettle to make my morning cup of coffee or stood under the shower for longer than I should. I thought of the Poonkarians with no usable water.
The Appé Lanka team galvanized their school partners, their art, drama and music partners, they launched an awareness program on social media titled “Chosen Generation” urging people to join them to give people in Poonakary what you and I take for granted – usable water.
Water purifying systems have been installed in six schools, in just 6 weeks; just 18 more need to be installed.
To think all we need is 10 USD from 5,000 persons and all 6,410 students can have what you and I take for granted – usable Water
Be a part of our vision for:
- the creation of a physically, intellectually, socially, spiritually, empowered people;
- a skilled, disciplined, productive work force;
- a place where trust, acceptance, dignity and good governance will prevail;
- an Appé Lanka we are proud to call home
- Name of Company Awakening Lanka Pvt. Ltd
- Name of Bank Sampath Bank, Head Office, Sri Lanka
- Bank account number 002930029729
- Bank Code 7278
- Swift Code BSAMLKL
- Contact Details +94772872056
Founder/CEO Appé Lanka