A few weeks ago, I was in Sri Lanka for the first time since the pandemic. You might have seen some snippets on Instagram at the time.
Main goals were joining the donations of sleeping bags and towels, meeting the local team in person and arranging the first donations of “a year of school’ (backpack, stationary, uniforms, shoes & socks). We'll come back to the latter and the status of the chess sets soon.
Production of 1.200 sleeping bags
All commercial bed linen and towels are manufactured in Portugal nowadays, but the donation sleeping bags are produced locally. In the above clip you can see a Sri Lankan workshop working on 1.200 sleeping bags for the Children’s Homes.
Donations in full effect
During our trip, we visited 3 Children’s Homes, supporting them with sleeping bags and towels. The above video is from the first one on the trip. The 2nd one we were not allowed to enter, because of Covid restrictions and we are working on a video of the third Children’s Home, which we will share later.
Mr. Afdhel AzizWe also had a nice encounter with Mr. Afdhel Aziz from LA. He is the co-author of Good is the new cool, writer for Forbes Magazine and creative jack-of-all-trades. We were already in touch about a piece on Forbes (coming soon!) but by coincidence Afdhel was on the island filming a documentary about Geoffrey Bawa, the architect who is a great inspiration to the both of us.
Sri Lanka’s current crisis
Last Thursday, it was Sri Lankan New Year. And while a day like that should be about celebration and new opportunities, the country is enduring its worst economic crisis since its independence. You might have heard about it in the news.
It touches us deeply to hear about the situation first-hand, but there seems to be a silver lining: thousands are gathering in the largest civilian uprising in Sri Lanka’s modern history, protesting an incompetent and corrupt regime. Hopefully a new government will be installed soon and the country can restore its economy with the support of the IMF and India.
It will most probably take years to do so, but after the war, the Tsunami, the Easter bombings – just 3 years ago - and Covid, this country deserves some “peace, prosperity and a little paper” (as A Tribe Called Quest would put it).
Easter brings hope and new life, right?