On April 21, 2019, Sri Lanka was rocked by a series of explosions targeting three churches and three five-star hotels in Sri Lanka. The Zion Church in Batticaloa, St. Anthony’s Shrine in Colombo, and St. Sebastian’s Church in Negombo as well as the Shangri La, Cinnamon Grand and Kingsbury hotels in Colombo. At this time, the death toll is at 257 with more than 500 injured.
The National Christian Evangelical Alliance Sri Lanka (NCEASL) is appealing for support to respond to this tragedy. At present, the NCEASL is providing LKR 50,000 for 30 families to cover funeral expenses of deceased loved ones and LKR 10,000 each for 59 individuals injured for medical expenses. In addition, the NCEASL is also hoping to provide emergency assistance to victims of the church attacks by providing:
- Regular support to affected families who have lost breadwinners;
- Psychosocial assistance for those suffering from trauma; and
- Long-term medical aid.
With regard to long-term impact, through the above measures, the NCEASL is aiming to:
- Assist victims to gradually rebuild their lives through monthly assistance beyond the emergency period; and
- Assist victims with physical injuries and those suffering from mental trauma and psychological challenges to gain full health or reach a better physical and mental state.
In assisting the NCEASL with this appeal, a few of us at comdu.it are reaching out to specific supporters within its immediate and extended network to facilitate Canadian donations to the NCEASL. While comdu.it’s mandate is not focused on humanitarian relief or charitable aid, it recognizes the extraordinary circumstances of the 2019 Easter Sunday tragedy in Sri Lanka.
Specifically, comdu.it is offering to collect and transfer donations to the NCEASL and will absorb any administrative fees in doing so. comdu.it has also confirmed with the NCEASL that any pool of funds that is transferred will be allocated as follows: 50% of the donations provided to the Zion Church in Batticaloa with the remainder equally split between St. Anthony’s Shrine in Colombo and St. Sebastian’s Church in Negombo. comdu.it has also requested the NCEASL to consider allocating the donations to provide victims and their families with psychosocial assistance in particular as that will be a long-term need in the communities impacted by the tragedy.
comdu.it and the NCEASL will cover all administrative costs so that your donation is wholly used for intended purposes.
For any donors wishing to donate to the NCEASL through comdu.it, you can do so in one of the following ways by May 21, 2019:
- Interac EMT to email@example.com;
- Direct deposit into CIBC Account No. 05702-2876914; or
- Cheque or draft made payable to COMDUIT DIASPORA HUB with “NCEASL Appeal” in the memo line provided in person or mailed to 400 – 2425 Eglinton Avenue East, Toronto, Ontario M1K 5G8 (ask for Muraly / Hansika).
comdu.it will report back to all donors with an acknowledgement receipt from the NCEASL, and assisting in obtaining any updates requested by donors.
Alternatively, you can also choose to donate directly to the NCEASL by sending your contributions to the following bank account:
- Account Number: 200230044106
- Account Name: National Christian Evangelical Alliance of Sri Lanka
- Address: No: 95, Galle Road, Dehiwala, 10350, Sri Lanka
- Bank Name: Nations Trust Bank PLC
- Bank Address: 242, Union Place, Colombo 2
- Bank code and the branch code: 7162 023
- SWIFT Code: (8 or 11 digits) NTBCLKLX
- For more information or to obtain receipts/acknowledgement letters for your direct donation, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you for considering!
Yamini Ravindran is the Legal and Advocacy Coordinator of the National Christian Evangelical Alliance of Sri Lanka (NCEASL). She comments on the often-overlooked discrimination against the Christian community. In an interview with Groundviews in Feb 2018, she addressed the relationship between religion and politics, and the problems that arise when the State attempts to control or channel religious practice.