The Foundation of Goodness’ 10th Village Heartbeat Empowerment (VHE) Centre opened its doors on Sunday 1st July, 2018. Situated in Bindunuwewa- Bandarawela District, this marks the Foundations’ first VHE Centre in the central region of the island, following the establishment of three Centres in the South, three in the East and three more in the North, in steady progression, with plans to establish 15 more in addition to our flagship model in Seenigama (The MCC Centre of Excellence and Sports Academy) the one of a kind holistic rural community initiative encompassing 30 empowerment activity sectors wish serve 15,000 beneficiaries from 300+ villages monthly, free of cost.
The 10 VHE Centres listed below reach approximately 7,500 beneficiaries every month from 130+ villages.
Udumulla- Galle District
Rathgama- Galle District
Hingurukaduwa- Moneragala District
Eravur- Batticaloa District
Gandara- Matara District
Thirukkovil- Ampara District
Mathagal- Jaffna District
Oddusuddan- Mullaitivu District
Murukandy- Kilinochchi District
Bandarawela- Badulla District
In essence the Centres are designed to empower rural disadvantaged villagers, especially through English and IT training which are essential in developing skills necessary for lucrative career opportunities that can then lead to upward socio-economic mobility, breaking the cycle of poverty they are trapped in. Other programmes also include life skills & values, educational subjects, vocational training and sports to help them make better progress, overcoming the disparity between the urban and rural communities.
This initiative, we believe, is an ideal solution to alleviate poverty elevating their standards, harnessing the rural talent and skill of the disadvantaged to make better progress as we have experienced in the last decade where kids, youth and women have accomplished amazing feats.
One of the beautiful features of this unique concept is that a few exceptional families have gifted their ancestral properties for the Foundation to create such a productive undertaking for the betterment of our nations and as donors can see the impact measurement firsthand knowing that given the opportunity, facilities, training and the exposure they are able to succeed with confidence.
The Bandarawela Village Heartbeat Empowerment Centre was declared open by renowned Sri Lankan cricketer Mr. Sidath Wettimuny. The Foundation of Goodness also wishes to thank the Wijesuriya Family from UK who gifted ‘Farleigh’, their beautiful ancestral property as the location to establish this Centre as well as Mr. & Mrs. Mohan and Geetha Chandramohan from US, the development sponsors for a period of 5 years, helping us deliver these valuable services which will help uplift the surrounding under-served communities.
FoG also salutes all the amazing donors who have believed in this concept to sponsor these learning and empowerment institutions for long periods of time, sustaining the model as we envision to establish 15 more Centres in the island, giving rural villagers a chance to excel.
The Foundation of Goodness was established in 1999 and has worked extensively following the 2004 tsunami that devastated the lives of thousands of Sri Lankans to develop a one of a kind holistic rural community development model which today delivers a wide range of programmes to over 15,000 beneficiaries every month from 300+ villagers in the South, North and East of Sri Lanka, free of charge, via our 30 empowerment activity sectors which include Arts & Multimedia, Children, Enterprise & Empowerment, Environment, Housing, Dental, Medical & Psycho-social support, Scholarships, Sports Development & Management, Sustainable Income Generation, Village Heartbeat Empowerment Project, Village Welfare & Development and Volunteer Management.
When the years of conflict came to an end, the Foundation of Goodness extended its development activities to the post-war North and East of Sri Lanka and have been working in the North since January 2011, reaching over 39,000 beneficiaries to date, with uninterrupted monthly visits to introduce, maintain and expand a variety of programmes including village infrastructure development, sports development, libraries, IT centres, schools development, water and sanitation projects, livelihood and vocational programmes, micro finance projects and have distributed over 4,040 bicycles to needy beneficiaries in partnership with Sri Lankan Cricketer Kumar Sangakkara and his ‘Sanga’s Bikes for Life’ programme.
The Foundation of Goodness has also branched out to offer its key courses and resources to distant rural villages via its TEN Village Heartbeat Empowerment Centres.
Lakruwan Wijesiri: First Sri Lankan Triathlete at the Asian Games
Foundation of Goodness’ Triathlete Lakruwan Wijesiri has become the first ever Sri Lankan triathlete to participate in the Asian Games. Lakruwan joined the Sri Lankan delegation who travelled to Indonesia for the 18th Asian Games which took place from the 18th of August to 2nd of September.
Lakruwan’s event was scheduled for the 1st of September where he was able to place 24th in the Elite Men’s category with a timing of 02:11:28 with the overall winner Jumpei Furuya from Japan obtaining a timing of 1:49:43
Most recently, Lakruwan obtained 1st place at the National Traihtlon Championship in Sri Lanka.
Lakruwan has been competing in triathlons locally since 2011 winning the Loving Trinco Triathlon in 2011 and 2012 as well as the Carlton Super Cross in 2013 and 2014. He started his international career as a professional triathlete in 2013 by participating in the Cold Storage Triathlon in Singapore and also participated in the Ironman 70.3 Triathlon in Indonesia in 2015, obtaining 4th place at both events. At this time, Lakruwan had no formal training as a triathlete and had only ever practiced at the FoG Bryan Adams Foundation Swimming Pool Complex while running and cycling down village roads.
Following his performance at the Singaporean triathlon the Foundation of Goodness were able to connect Lakruwan with sponsor Mr. Mohan Chandramohan from USA who supported his training at MetaSport- Singapore. He was also given the backing, training and development by the Sri Lankan Navy to raise the bar in reaching this milestone along with the support of the Sri Lankan Triathlon Association including its Secretary, Mr. Sam Wickramasinghe.
Lakruwan is currently a Swimming Coach at the Foundation of Goodness Sports Academy and hopes to expand his triathlon dreams to one day represent Sri Lanka at the Olympic Games.
The Foundation of Goodness was established in 1999 and has worked extensively following the 2004 tsunami that devastated the lives of thousands of Sri Lankans to develop a one of a kind holistic rural community development model which today delivers a wide range of programmes to over 15,000 beneficiaries every month from 300+ villagers in the South, North and East of Sri Lanka, free of charge, via our 30 empowerment activity sectors delivered through MCC Centre of Excellence and Sports Academy in Seenigama and 10 Village Heartbeat Empowerment Centres. The Sports Academy delivers free of charge sporting activities in numerous avenues catering to 500 participants from 92 villages in the Seenigama Region.
Lakruwan’s achievements, specially being the only triathlete ever to represent Sri Lanka at a major international event like the Asian Games, proves the existence of a wealth of talent and skills identifiable in the rural villages of our country and how many more talented athletes we can find if they are guided in the right direction to keep our nation’s flag flying high.