The past month has been a struggle for The Project health wise. Sri Lanka was hit with a nasty island wide influenza epidemic effecting most of the population. It took a concoction of medicines and 5 weeks for us to shift it. But we're fortunate we can seek effective treatment; sadly it's taken the lives of some of the more vulnerable.
We've juggled our health with work and the school holidays and the struggle has been worth it.
During the August holidays The TEA Project works at a local charity centre in Kandy; a safe place that cares for vulnerable children. Here children receive further education, are guaranteed a hot meal and can hang out with their peers and relax in safe surroundings. The TEA Project provides the charity with creative and stimulating weekly 'Street-safe' workshops where children get the chance to explore & express their creative abilities both individually & collectively through fine art, crafts, dance, music, debate, creative writing, children's rights awareness and competitions. Most importantly we are there to make sure they have fun.
The TEA Project works for children from the poorest social backgrounds. If employed, parents work long hours in the lowest paid manual labour positions such as street cleaning or if not working then begging. School holidays present increased hardship rather than excitement. Without supervision or the distraction of school to occupy their time children assume increased family responsibilities; cleaning, cooking, washing etc. Modern day Cinderellas. Others are left in the care of extended family members where abuse is common. Some prefer the care of the streets and the harmful opportunities that arise from tourism. So Street-safe is an important service.
We decided to take our kids to the beach by Trincomalee in the north east for a 5 day mini break of prescribed hammock time and sand action to try and shift the flu with some sea air. It didn't work unfortunately but we still had the best family time ever. 5 hours by bus from Kandy gets you to Trinco; relatively still undeveloped since the end of the war compared to the south it's a pearl of a place where you can kick back away from the crowds and pollution of the city. We even gained some new friends to The TEA Project. We met Ela and Lukasz from Dublin one evening and have since received an email letting us know they have ordered 100 pens for the Sri Lankan children. Thank you guys.
Look out for the launch of our '30/30 Appeal 2015' in September. With your help we are planning to provide 30 days of dynamic youth led training & workshops through October and November 2015 that will reach hundreds of Sri Lankan children through three empowering TEA project initiatives; 'Life/Echo', 'L.I.F.E Training' and 'Joining Hands'.
Keep your eyes on the horizon.
We wish you all the best of health,
Have fun wherever you are.
Catch you in September...