“A Walk for Education”, an initiative taken by Give2SriLanka, (www.give2SriLanka.com) was held at the Racecourse Grounds, Colombo 7 recently.
It saws the participation of over two hundred students, activists, senior management and employees of Berendina, as well as many well-wishers. The walk and music festival was organized by Give2SriLanka, in order to raise funds and awareness of its Rural Students’ Scholarship Program, which has been benefitting students across 9 districts in Sri Lanka for the past 15 years. The Chief Guest at the event was the Ambassador of the Netherlands to Sri Lanka and Maldives, Joanne Doornewaard. She commended Berendina and Give2SriLanka for being a not-for-profit organization which has been actively involved in rural community development and microfinance in Sri Lanka for over two decades, and reiterated the commitment of the Netherlands to helping further the goals of the organization.
The walk was followed by the awarding of scholarships to 45 deserving (6 credits at O level with mathematics) yet impoverished students (samurdhi or per person income of the family below Rs. 5,000) from 9 selected districts in Sri Lanka. This brought the total scholarships given in 2015 to 1000. This program sees the children right up to employment or higher education. Berendina’s Chairman Dulan De Silva also spoke at the event, outlining the vision that Berendina hopes to expand through the Give2SriLanka initiative; in making education accessible to all eligible students of rural Sri Lanka.
The musical festival which took place as a finale of the walk featured some of the biggest names in the local music industry. The crowds were entertained by Bathiya and Santhush, the ever-popular band Daddy, winners of TNL Onstage 2015, Cosmogyral, as well as Infinity. These artists had generously come forward to support the cause of education, and they added a colorful closure to a successful event.