Nearly 29,000 families were displaced from Valikamam North alone (Palali HSZ from Thondamanaru to Mathagal) in 1990 and have been living in welfare centres and with friends and relatives for the past 28 years. The majority of them are fishing families from the coastal areas of Valikamam North. Only now, they are returning to their lands but without much assistance. These families desperately need support to stand on their own feet and to start their lives again without looking for handouts. Ministry of Rehabilitation of the Sri Lankan government recently requested Assist RR & IMHO USA to provide fishing gear to families who were displaced by the war and are being resettled in the North and East of Sri Lanka. The ministry agreed to provide 50% of the costs as soft loans if Assist RR & IMHO USA provide the other 50% as grants. We would like this to happen for as many families as possible. However, the number of complete fishing livelihood solutions provided is entirely dependent on the amount of funds raised by the supporters of both charities. The cost of a boat, outboard engine and nets is around £2800. Assist RR & IMHO therefore needs to raise £1400 for each set provided. Each boat, engine and nets will be shared by two families.
After hearing about this need, UK Solihull Junior School Headmaster Mr Mark Penney and his wife Mrs Donna Penney have told Assist RR & IMHO that they will be walking the 55KM South Coast Challenge – Eastborne to Hove on 25 Aug 2018 to raise funds for the above project. Although they have no direct connection to the victims of war in the north and east, they are going to undertake this painful task to enable the victims to earn a living and to lead decent lives. We hope that the Diaspora Tamils, who have connections to these affected families, at least can support their effort by sponsoring their walk. Their fund raising pages are given below. Please kindly consider making a donation. All donations of any size are welcome and we urge you to give generously and support the efforts of Mark and Donna. Please also note that Mark Penney recently gave three presentations at the IMHO USA Annual Convention in Ohio on behalf of Assist RR and ran a workshop with High School students as part of IMHO’s Junior Leaders Programme. During the convention, IMHO USA raised $19,000 towards the Penneys’ boats appeal.
For the residents of UK & other Countries:
Assist RR UK Fund Raising Page
All donations by UK tax payers qualify for Gift Aid and may be tax deductible.
For the residents of USA:
IMHO USA Fund Raising Page
All donations made by US tax payers are tax deductible.