Aug 10 – 17, 2009, Matara
INDECOS is a mature NGO in Sri Lanka. Since commencement in 1991, it has completed 60 projects and is now doing 9 projects, big and small. The most impressive aspect, besides her high-motivated staff, is that they stretch out to the local community and give really hands-on coaching to the people – they love, and be familiar with the local people.
Photo 33: Mr.Conrad lecturing to 15-year-old village children.
Photo 34: WEP team surveying women in tsunami areas.
Her full name is “Institute for Development of Community Strengths”. One of her label recent undertaking is the women entrepreneurship development since 2005 (the current project “Women Entrepreneurship Program” – WEP – starts in 2007), a micro-credit project targeting tsunami-affected women. INDECOS is now self-sufficient in providing loans, no longer relying on sponsors. I mentioned this project because it has convinced me that INDECOS is successful at the grassroot level. That weeklong visit to the schools made me seriously consider that awareness to education reckons on family support. Even poor families can put education at the first place when they are convinced of the power of it. We can’t just provide them money occasionally, but to empower them continuously – this is also the belief of INDECOS.
Photo 35: Community meetings.
Photo 36: Tree planting activity.
Since about 5 years ago, INDECOS has conducted many projects targeting children. I have written about MCC (Matara Children Centre), which provides preschool education to kids from low-income families, skills training and scholarship to high school students and other awareness raising programs such as Star for Life. I have been spending most of my time in MCC reviewing their projects especially getting an insight into her scholarship scheme. Since they have years of experience in student sponsorship, and have built up close relationship with local schools (not only through MCC, but also HIV/AIDS projects, environment education projects, anti-abuse campaigns, and even WEP), I think it is suitable for a cooperation with Givology, to utilize its widespread Internet platform to support Matara local children.
Photo 37: Dr.Ekanayake delivering HIV/AIDS lecture to village kids.
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