Athwal – A Helping Hand In Need

Athwal – A Helping Hand In Need

“Kindness can transform someone’s dark moment with a blaze of light. You’ll never know how much your caring matters. Make a difference for another today.”

– Amy Leigh Mercree.

This is a dark moment for everyone in the whole world. We all are in need, we all are frightened, we all are in the same deep, dark abyss and we all should help each other to get out of it. The only way that we can survive this tough period is by being a ‘blaze of light’ to one another. We must care for one another, look after one another and help one another to rise up and face this ongoing situation. Thus, we can make a huge difference in society by lending a helping hand to everyone during a time where they need help the most.

Considering the contemporary context of the world, the community service project “Athwal” aimed to be the exact meaning of the word itself. “Athwal” is the third community service initiative done by the Rotaract Club of University of Colombo, Faculty of Arts. It took the form of a donation of 95 packs of dry rations to the students and teachers of Batawela Kanishta Vidyala in Padukka, a school that had 83 students from grades 1 to 5, where most of them were facing severe financial difficulties. This project was done in the hope of providing them, and their families some assistance with their household necessities.

According to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the first and tenth goals which are zero hunger and reduced inequalities respectfully, were the goals we wanted to tackle with this project. The objective  of “Athwal” was to satisfy the nutritional needs of students of Batawela Kanishta Vidyala, to provide them and their families with assistance for their everyday expenses to improve the standard of living, especially now, during in a  time of high inflation. Further, the scope of the project was providing nutrition to students during these difficult times and improving their educational abilities by providing the basic conducive environment that they need to carry out their studies unhindered by financial issues.

“Athwal” was initially planned as a donation of dry rations to the essential workers of the Faculty of Arts, University of Colombo, at the request of Dr. Shashithanganee Weerawansa (our club advisor). Unfortunately, the pandemic posed challenges in configuring the proceedings. However, the principal of Batawela Kanishta Vidyalaya requested the Rotaract Club to provide dry rations to the children of the school as they were having difficulties due to post-pandemic inflation, and it was decided that the dry rations will be provided to them. At the school, we had a short conversation and greetings with the principal and donated the items to the children and the teachers of Batawala Kanishta Vidyalaya.

Thus, we ended the project by providing the essential needs of many students struggling financially, meeting our expected outcomes, by being a helping hand in need and bringing a smile to their faces.

– Rtr. Tharushika Peelikumbura

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