After 2 days rest we made our way inland up to Chilaw which is on the West Coast of Sri Lanka above Colombo.
We saw 3 projects and met our Sri Lankan helper who is co-ordinating the Christmas Card Competition with several schools. One project was a middle aged single lady who requires a leg brace to enable her to walk.
We then had a long drive up into the mountains where we stayed in a converted Tea Plantation House. We saw our 4th Montessori School and one of our sponsored children together with attending a small ceremony for the completion of a small house for a very poor family. Sadly, the wife is sick and it was extremely sad to see her having a seizure at the ceremony. It transpired that she had run out of medicine and could not afford any more. We drove to Gampala – the nearest large town some 30 miles distant and managed to buy a supply of medication for her. She and her husband with five children lived in a tumbled down mud house and survived on an income from four cows. We visited four other projects in the area.
We then drove up in the Knuckle Range and again stayed in a Tea Plantation House
– hairpin bend after hairpin bend! Unfortunately, we had to push the van on two occasions and got covered in mud in the process!
We then visited Kandy and the Centre for the Handicapped where we have previously sent several people for artificial limbs.
Next, we drove on to our base for 8 days in Habarana in Eastern/Cenbtral Sri Lanka. This area is very rural and ‘jungly’ with a large National Park close by. It is well known for elephant safaris and we normally see many wild elephants on our travels. We spent those 8 days looking at 26 last phase completed projects and next phase of 28 selected out of about 50.
We saw all of our 6 sponsored families – 1 set of triplets, 1 twins, 2 children and one elderly couple and another elderly lady.
We also inspected a potential project located near Colombo.
In all we travelled over 1,500 miles with Dissa our driver mostly on tracks.
We distributed two tea chests and one large case load of clothing, toys, books, school books and one sewing machine and donated numerous food packs.
We also visited 5 Montessori’s which were constructed or extended by us and donated drawing books and toys.
We returned to Colombo and home having had another very successful visit to Sri Lanka.