VISION

We are a growing global network of diaspora volunteers committed to the sustainable development of the traditional Tamil homelands in Sri Lanka. We are committed to helping shift diaspora engagement from charity to sustainability, from aid to economic development, and from sending remittance to building a knowledge economy instead.

OBJECTIVES

Since
2016

We are focused on:

  • Leveraging the diaspora’s knowledge assets, responsible investments, and networks to strengthen local, community-based organisations that serve vulnerable populations.
  • Becoming a one-stop diaspora hub for sustainable development that consolidates information, facilitates collaboration, and streamlines resources in order to sharpen diaspora focus on sustainability for the next generation.

MILESTONES

  1. May 2019:

    2019 Mission Launch

  2. March 2018:

    Launch of 2018 Sri Lanka Mission

  3. January 2018:

    Launch of comdu.it Germany, our first international chapter

  4. November 2017:

    Launch of multi-city meetup campaign  

  5. July 2017:

    Launch of our Sri Lanka 2017 Mission  

  6. April 2017:

    Formal launch of re-design programs focused on leveraging diaspora technical assistance for development

  7. December 2016:

    Seed fundraiser kick off to raise approximately $200K over two years

  8. October 2016:

    Participated in Engaging Overseas Sri Lankans: Promoting Responsible Investment and Technical Assistance conference hosted by International Alert

  9. September 2016:

    Legally incorporated as a non-profit organization in the Province of Ontario

  10. August 2016:

    Interviewed for diaspora research studies in Canada, United States, and United Kingdom

  11. May 2016:

    Leadership team renewed

  12. April 2016:

    Review of outcomes of two-year pilot and decision made to incorporate as a non-profit organization

  13. March 2016:

    Two field volunteer placed to support after-school program in rural Jaffna

  14. October 2015:

    Helped raise nearly $10,000 for various aid efforts in the North and East of Sri Lanka, and partnered with 10 diaspora organizations in Canada

  15. April 2015:

    Participated in Cultural Communities for Sustainable Development Consultation roundtable co-hosted by the Government of Canada

  16. March 2015:

    $2,300 raised to support 19 micro-gift beneficiaries

  17. April 2014:

    comdu.it launched as a two-year pilot initiative in Toronto, Canada

  18. February 2014:

    Partnerships established with eight local partners in Sri Lanka

  19. January 2014:

    Field mission to North, East and Central Sri Lanka to complete preliminary needs assessment

  20. December 2013:

    Broader community consultation on network mandate and objectives

  21. August 2013:

    Initial meetings with founding team to plan and design network.

PEOPLE

Our core team is comprised of the following dedicated individuals, all of whom serve in a volunteer capacity.

Team Canada

Jesse David
Siva Dhayalan
Geetha Gnanapragasam
Janaparan Gunaratnarajah
Hansika Gunaratne
Bahi Kandavel
Janakan Muthukumar
Kumaran Nadesan
Hamsha Pathmanathan
Pawrnaa Perinpanayagam
Thenoosiya Ratnam
Tharsica Sivananthan
Zinthuya Sivananthan
Muraly Srinarayanathas
Joanna Sugunathazan
Ahiraa Supeinthiran

We are also grateful for the contributions made by our former volunteers: Aarthi Achuthappa, Amarnath Amarasingam, Haran Aruliah, Don Embuldeniya, Dharsha Jegatheeswaran, Thursica Kovinthan, Rajanthi Manivannan, Yohani Mendis, Aranee Murugananthan, Ahila Poologaindran, Suruthi Ragulan, Anupama Ranawana, Yamuna Samuel, Sashi Selvendran, Vithya Shanthasoruban, Anita Sivabalan, Priya Tharmaseelan, Gobhi Theivendran, Matangi Thillai, Kirthika Umasuthan, Thuva Vanniyasingam, and others who wish to remain anonymous.

Team Germany

Freedanz Ferdinandz
Mershilah Ferdinandz
Saranga Kethees
Suthan Kethees
Priyanga Pathmanathan
Nisanth M. Rajah
https://ch.linkedin.com/in/nisanth-m-rajah-44101664https://mobile.twitter.com/nishi1905https://www.instagram.com/nishi1905/
Tharsini Rajah
Keerthana Selvanathan
Shaumiyah Selvanathan
Thana Sivasambu
Thaksan Sothinathan
Lavanya Sreeranganathan
Laxciya Varathanathan

Annual Gala Co-Chairs

Vinitha Gengatharan
Malliha Wilson

International Volunteers

Deepa Bala
(2016 Mission)
Sanhar Balachandran
(2018 Mission)
Angela Britto
(2017 Mission)
Supendra Chandrakumar
(2017 Mission)
Anoshinie Muhundarajah
(2017 Mission)
Achchana Nadarajah
(2016 Mission)
Priyanga Pathmanathan
(2018 Mission)
Raj Rajakumar
(2017 Mission)
Sivaharan Rajkumar
(2017 Mission)
Naveeni Rasiah
(2018 Mission)
Thenoosiya Ratnasingam
(2018 Mission)
Sayanthan Ravindranathan
(2017 Mission)
Sumu Sathi
(2017 Mission)
Saina Sivakumar
(2018 Mission)
Tharsica Sivananthan
(2018 Mission)
Sunitha Subramaniam
(2018 Mission)
Ahiraa Supeinthiran
(2018 Mission)
Lawsan Thanapalan
(2017 Mission)
Lawanyaa Thavakumar
(2018 Mission)
Mathura Thiagarajah
(2018 Mission)
Sunthar Vykunthanathan
(2017 Mission)

Staff

Asha Selvadurai
Social Media Coordinator (Summer 2019)
Abinaya Srimuralitharan
Executive Assistant (Summer 2019)
Suvabna Theivendrampillai
Fundraising Assistant (Summer 2019)
Padma Ugbabe
Program Assistant

CURRENT PARTNERS

Our 2019 Sri Lanka Mission is made possible by the support of our valued local partners in the North and East of Sri Lanka

  • bridging-lanka-web-logoBridging Lanka bridges ethnic, religious and geographic divides through people-inspired action. It harnesses the expertise and resources of diaspora participants for the benefit of locals in Sri Lanka – through livelihood support, business development, community advocacy, urban planning, education and social cohesion projects.
    Learn More
  • american-ceylon-logoThe Church of the American Ceylon Mission focuses on early childhood education and nutrition, after school educational and leadership programs for children and youth, vocational training, women’s livelihoods, children’s homes, and a centre for children with mental disability.
    Learn More
  • partnerAaruthal Sri Lanka is a registered charity that  works with communities to address many of the human impacts resulting from civil war.  It engages in various community projects including those aimed at developing sustainable programs in education, mental health and women-centred development projects.
    Learn More
  • partnerFriends of Youth is a non-profit, non-political, and philanthropic organisation that focuses on after school educational and leadership programs for children and youth, vocational training, women’s livelihoods, mental health and psychosocial support, as well as rehabilitation activities in the North and East of Sri Lanka.
    Learn More
  • grace-girls-logoThe Grace Girls Home is a residence for girls aged 5-18, who are provided with shelter, food, an education, and access to medical treatment. The girls attend a nearby school, participate in extracurricular activities, and are offered religious instruction in the faith of their family.
    Learn More
  • partnerHealing Opportunity for Person for Empowerment (HOPE) organization provides an enriching and nurturing environment for children with disabilities. The organization works closely with educators and parents to support and encourage children with disabilities to participate in activities as a way to build confidence and skills, while empowering them to learn and grow.
  • partnerhumedica Lanka is a registered non-governmental organisation that aims to support vulnerable populations with directed and sustainable aid. Based in Colombo and Jaffna, the different aid projects range from disaster relief after floods and landslides to long-term support such as Learning Centers, a Preschool and Mobile Clinics.
    Learn More
  • partner
    INFORM Human Rights Documentation Centre was established to monitor and document the human rights situation in Sri Lanka, especially in the context of the ethnic conflict and civil war. INFORM works by reporting on the situation through written and oral interventions at the local, national and international level.
    Learn More
  • grace-girls-logo
    Institute of Regional Development and Governance was founded by like minded local and overseas professionals for regional development by providing knowledge-based solutions to the complex challenge of post war recovery.
    Learn More
  • openeOrganisation of People for Engagement and Enterprise firmly emphasises a holistic and integrated programmatic approach where it works on social and economic development alongside local communities and measures progress by outcomes rather than outputs.
    Learn More
  • orhan logoOrganisation for Rehabilitation of the Handicapped provides a range of services to persons of disabilities in the Vavuniya district of Sri Lanka. Its vision is “Equal rights and equal opportunities for persons with disabilities through barrier free society.”
    Learn More
  • partner-logoThe Social Economical & Environmental Developers (SEED) aims to fight poverty and overcoming social exclusion of underprivileged groups. Likewise, it includes the promotion of environmental awareness and conservation to support the institutional goals.
    Learn More
  • partnerSponsor a Mind Build A Life (SAMBAL) focuses on providing charitable assistance to children who are disadvantaged due to war, poverty, natural disasters, and other calamities.
    The organisation focuses on improving computer and language literacy for children and youth by providing them with high quality STEM education and equal access to technological resources.
    Learn More
  • partnerStreet Child is a registered charity and England and Wales as well as a registered Voluntary Social Service/NGO in Sri Lanka. Street Child is based in Batticaloa, and focuses on delivering programs to address barriers in various thematic areas, such as quality and inclusive education and teacher training, disaster risk resilience, education in emergencies, and gender empowerment initiatives. Learn More

FUNDERS

open-society-foundations-logo
canada-logo

 


CORPORATE SPONSORS

ivedha-logoturtle capitalVirtace

 


CORPORATE PARTNERS

computek
konnect
virtuace
aversan
ideal
office-pub
saffron
local44
southern-aroma

 


DIASPORA PARTNERS

visions
plamera
tamil-culture"

Former Local Partners

We are grateful for the support of our former local partners in Sri Lanka, including: Capokolam, Caritas – EHED, Centre for Women and Development, Ceylon Spinning and Textile Mills, Chinmaya Organization for Rural Development – Sri Lanka, Dr. Sam Education Centre, Glorious Jaffna Foundation, Gudppl, J/Kopay Christian College, Khemadasa Foundation,  Lanka Evangelical Alliance Development Service, Mannar District Chambers of Commerce Industry and Agriculture, Muthu Nava Ratna Trust, Northern Chamber of Information Technology, Point Pedro Institute for Development, Siruvar Apiviruththi Munneduppu, Wellspring Centre for Learning, Women’s Education and Research Centre, and YarlIT Hub. We are also grateful to number of other organisations in Sri Lanka for their collaboration, advice, or exploratory partnership discussions,  including: Adayaalam Centre for Policy and Research, Anai, Association of War Affected Women, Bismi Group, Centre for Poverty Analysis,  CrowdIsland, Eastern University of Batticaloa, Families of the Disappeared, Groundviews, High Information Technology Education and Social Development Organisation, International Alert Sri Lanka, Jaffna Managers Forum, Jaffna Rotary Club, Jaffna Teaching Hospital, Kaveri Kala Manram, Lankan Angel Network, Mayilambaveli Children’s Home, Northern Women Coop Bank, Social Development and Research Organization, Shanthiham Association for Health and Counselling, Sri Lanka Centre for Development Facilitation, Suriya Women’s Centre, The Social Architects, Vallamai, and  YGRO.


Diaspora and International Support

We are grateful for the support, advice, and conversation extended to us by several international organization and diaspora groups, including: Abinayalaya Natyalayam, Achieve Real Change UK, Abuse Never Becomes Us, Alliance for South Asian AIDS Prevention, Association of Sri Lankan Graduates of Canada, Canadian Tamil Humanitarian Association, Canadian Tamil Law Students and Lawyers, Canadian Tamil Medical Association, Canadian Tamil Professionals Association, Capokolam, Care for Education, Carnatic Youth Society of Canada, CASA Foundation, Children Aid Rehabilitation Education Program, Childrens10 Foundation, Christian Children’s Fund of Canada, Deutsche-Tamilische Studierende Bochum, Durham Tamil Association, Educate Lanka Foundation, Healing Northern Sri Lanka, Hope4Child Relief Mission, Initiative Tamilischer Studierender Aachen, International Medical Health Organization Canada, Innovation Ecosystem North East Sri Lanka, Isaiyarangam Performing Art Centre, Loving Mothers, Manaveli Performing Arts Group, Markham-Unionville Rotary Club, McMaster Tamil Students Association, Mennonite Economic Development Associates Canada, National Capital Region Tamils Association, Ontario Council for International Cooperation, Ottawa Tamil Association, Otthulaippu, Pierre Elliott Trudeau High School Tamil Students Association, Scarborough Twilight Rotary Club, Shylo Foundation, Senergy, Sri Lankans Without Borders, SV Robotics Foundation, Tamil Association of Professionals, Tamil Cultural Association of Waterloo Region, Tamil Entrepreneurial Network for Women, Tamil Health Association, Tamil Literary Garden, Tamil Medical Pharma Association, Tamils in Public Service, Tamil Studies Symposium (York University), Tamil Worlds Initiative (University of Toronto at Scarborough), TECH Outreach Malaysia, Thamilisai Kaala Manram, Thenmaradchi Development Association, UK Tamil Students Union, University of Toronto at St. George Tamil Students Association, University of Waterloo Tamil Networking Association, Vanni Aid Canada, Wilfrid Laurier Tamil Students Association, World Food Programme Sri Lanka, World University Services Canada, and X Change Charity.