Dear club members, dear other club supporters,
how I would like to start a member information without starting with a current Corona report. But this seems to be impossible for the time being. So I start with the wish and hope that all our club members and club supporters have made it through the Corona year in good health and may it stay that way. The second Corona wave arrived in Sri Lanka at the beginning of this month. Until then, the number of cases etc. was very moderate in comparison. However, due to more tests and also the repatriation of citizens from abroad, a significantly higher infection rate seems to have developed.
1. Current project “Rosenkinder” Sponsorships in cooperation with the Lions Club Aluthgama/Bentota
For our currently sponsored 67 “Rosenkinder” sponsorships there is probably only “home-schooling”. After all, they are very keen to somehow carry out the o and a-level examinations (Mittlere Reife / Abitur). I am in active exchange with our helpers Chandani and Dooland. There is also something very pleasant to report. We can welcome our 68th godchild. It is the 23-year-old Dilmi Ranreka – here in the picture – a girl from a very tragic family situation. This year we got to know the family personally and visited them at home. The mother is seriously mentally disturbed and is looked after by her husband around the clock. The father therefore has no steady job or income. There is another two years younger sister Sakuni Kawindi, who has been studying business administration in Colombo for one year. We are already supporting Sakuni. Dilmi was still waiting for a permanent place to study close to home. Now that she has been accepted, she will also be sponsored by us starting next year. There is also a younger brother in the family. We are happy to be able to accompany two very nice and intelligent girls on a qualified education. Due to the family situation, studying would not have been possible.
2. Current project special education at the Anula Wijerama Children Home in Balapitiya in cooperation with the All Ceylon Buddhist Congress (ACBC)
For the 35 girls currently living in the children’s home in Balapitiya, too, lock down has recently been restored, i.e. they are now in the home around the clock and no longer have to attend classes. The teachers we finance are also currently unable to hold their classes at the home. “Children” homeschooling here as well, which is particularly difficult here. In addition, a twelve-year-old girl was admitted to the children’s home and had brought chickenpox with her, so that an additional health quarantine had to be organized. How nice it is to learn that 2 girls from the home were recently invited to Colombo. Woschini and Uresha were officially honored for their excellent o-level degree. Done at a central event organized by ACBC for all of their 17 orphanages in Sri Lanka. Woschini received a personal award from the wife of the Prime Minister of Sri Lanka. This will certainly remain unforgettable for the girls and is of course a special recognition for the home and our targeted support there. We keep our fingers crossed for Woschini and Uresha on the further way hopefully to a successful a-level graduation!
3. Current project “Rosenkinder Hostel” at the Vocational Training Center in Panadura in cooperation with the All Ceylon Buddhist Congress (ACBC)
According to the information available so far, the 13 orphan girls currently being sponsored by us are still staying at the Rosenkinder Hostel. We have great hope that by the end of the year the girls with a qualified degree as seamstress or beautician will move to their homes or better yet, into a secure professional position. After that, the next group of orphan girls will surely come to our hostel in 2021. All this is of course dependent on the further development of Corona. After all, the last we heard was that the bureaucratic efforts for a second Rosenkinder Hostel for boys are progressing. The practical work on the buildings is the smaller obstacle in Sri Lanka. That gives hope.
4. Other „Rosenkinder“ projects
Also the ACBC children’s home for blind and deaf-mute children in Mahaweewa and the school on the premises have now been evacuated again due to Corona, except for a few children from distant regions, and the children have been taken back to their families. Fortunately, however, the project work for the new mushroom farm financed by us has now been completed. The building – as you can see – is finished and also the shelves in it are ready to receive the prepared mushroom cultivation cushions in cooperation with the supervising university soon. Wouldn’t it be great if I could soon eat a delicious mushroom curry in Mahaweewa?
In the meantime, we also have the first pictures of our “real” Corona project in the north of the island. Actually, we had expected pictures of our Corona food aid for families planned together with the heart surgeon Umeswaran Arunagirinathan “Umes”. The project is also finished, but there are no pictures of it yet. Our project has been partly restructured depending on the need and local requirements. Part of the money has now been used to equip children of poor families with bicycles. During our last visit to the north of Sri Lanka we could convince ourselves that the infrastructure there is clearly lagging behind the rest of the country. Private cars are almost non-existent and the bus network is full of holes. But bicycles are urgently needed. Therefore we are happy about this change in the use of our donation.
5. Other information
We venture a look into the new year 2020! Even in Corona times, with all its uncertainties, the “Rosenkinder” will continue. Two important dates have already been set for next year. According to the statutes we have to hold a general meeting every year. The scheduling would actually not be so necessary yet. However, we have planned a star guest with a full schedule for this event. This is the heart surgeon Umeswaran Arunagirinathano “Umes”, who was just mentioned. He has just published his third book with great success. His first book about his escape from Sri Lanka and his second book about his integration experiences he has already presented to us in the circle of Rosenkinder members. His third book is about his profession and current problems in medical care. Title: The lost patient – How the business of health makes us sick. Of course Umes is supposed to introduce this book to us in the circle of our members and also report a little about our common project. Perhaps you have already heard something about it in the press or on radio and television. We are happy to have already arranged a free appointment with this very much sought-after man. This will be:
Sunday, April 25, 2021
Iin the context of our 15th general meeting. So it is worthwhile to note this date in your diary. As small foretaste I recommend “Umes on the red sofa” on coming Monday on the NDR-TV-Station.
You should also make a note of August 8, 2021, the day on which our club will be 15 years old. That is also a Sunday. We have already reserved the town hall in Uetersen for that day. An interesting daily program is planned, which is not yet fixed in detail. But we already know, it starts with an official ceremony and ends with a jazz concert with our house band “Alabama Hot Six”. We already have a “guest of honor” acceptance! It is the new ambassador of Sri Lanka in Berlin Mrs. Manori Unambuwe. I got to know her personally last month in Hamburg. Our club member and Honorary Consul General of Sri Lanka Mr. Olav C. Ellerbrock had invited. Present were the two Sri Lanka associations in the north, the Sri Lanka Association Hamburg and we, the “Rosenkinder”. Mrs. Monori showed great interest in our projects, especially for the children in her home country and promised her personal support for our work. In the meantime I am already in good contact with the embassy. They want to report about our projects as an embassy and we should also get involved in the social media of the embassy.
Unfortunately the ambassador could not tell us a date when the airport in Colombo will be reopened for tourists. In this respect, my 17th trip to Sri Lanka is still only a wish hidden behind a big corona cloud.
I wish you all a beautiful autumn, good health and I hope you will continue to enjoy the Corona times.
You / Yours