Saturday, 15 July 2006

Sri Lanka: Report 5

Dear SCAW friends,

We made it back to Colombo last night after a 9-hour bus ride on winding roads.

To date we have distributed 4,500 bedkits, many in the agricultural area of the country where tea plantations are plentiful. The last two distributions will be today (Sunday), and then we go off to the airport tonight.

We got to some really remote parts of the country where the children were very needy.
Daily, we run across a number of the children that we would love to take home with us. It is not uncommon to hear a team member shout "suitcase child" meaning: "Can we take him or her home with us?"

The team has stayed healthy with only a few upset stomachs mostly caused by motion sickness from all the travelling.

Knowing children are the future of any country, you donors should feel good about doing your part to help these children get a good night's sleep, thereby being able to be more attentive in school so that they can get their education.

SCAW travelling team in Colombo

Monday, 10 July 2006

Sri Lanka: Report 4

Dear SCAW friends,

Sri Lankans say, ‘’If you can drive in Sri Lanka, you can drive anywhere in the world."

We wholeheartedly agree with this statement! The road is shared by pedestrians, cyclists, motor bikes, "iron buffaloes", 3-wheeled tuk-tuk’s, cars, vans, buses, trucks, transport trucks, dogs, cows, and goats.

We have experienced this because of our extensive traveling to our distribution sites. Although the distances are not long, there are no highways, therefore it takes a long time to travel short distances.

Each day, we have been traveling to two different distribution sites, for an average of more than five hours of travel time. We would rather travel to the childrens’ villages, than have the kids walk or travel extremely long distances to the distribution sites.

We are excited to be heading off for five days into rural areas to continue with the distributions — but we will be without the convenience of internet correspondence.

SCAW Sri Lanka Team

Thursday, 6 July 2006

Sri Lanka: Report 3

Dear SCAW friends,

After walking long distances, children have been waiting patiently for the SCAW team’s arrival. The kids receiving bedkits are between the ages of 6 and 12 years old and are of equal number of boys and girls. They are also from a variety of beliefs and cultures.

The children generally seem to be well nourished and in good spirits. Upon recveiving a bedkit, the kids show their appreciation with a smile, giggle, and thank you's.

The children helped team member Liz Vanderwater celebrate her birthday by singing happy birthday and sharing the cake.

SCAW Sri Lanka Team

Wednesday, 5 July 2006

Sri Lanka: Report 2

Dear SCAW friends,

At every distribution, the SCAW team has been greeted with a variety of traditional dancing, music, flag raising, the singing of the national anthem and the presentation of the temple flower leis — traditional Sri Lankan welcome — by the children.

In anticipation of the team’s arrival, the children have been practicing these performances for some time.

The children also welcome the team by presenting them with beetle leaves, at which time they show honour and respect for the team by kneeling and touching our feet three times.

Before the distributions begin, each team member, as well as local representatives, take part in the lighting of the lamp of light.

SCAW Sri Lanka Team

Tuesday, 4 July 2006

Sri Lanka: 500 Happy Children

From Sri Lanka Pho...
Dear SCAW friends,

Here is the SCAW Sri Lanka 2006 team picture: Seated on the left is Cindy Brown, then in the middle is Elizabeth Vanderwater, then on the right Marilyn Hill. Standing on the left is Ryan Rourke, I'm in the middle, and Bud Adams on the right. An awesome team, all of whom love children.

The first 500 of 5000 children went home happy today with their bedkits over their shoulders. Unfortunately it was raining, which caused some concerns but the job got done. The children who received bedkits today did not seem to be malnourished or hungry — just very poor.

Once again, the mosquito net is very popular — only about 5% of the children already have them — but 100% indicate that they would use one if they had one.

Tomorrow (Wednesday) we are leaving at 6am for a three-hour drive to the first distribution then on further to another one where we will be staying overnight. On Thursday we head back to Colombo doing two more distributions on the way.

That's all for now. Got to hit the hay.

For the children,