The wrath of nature took its course. The heavens let loose and the flood gates opened up; leaving thousands of people displaced with no food to eat, no water to drink and no roof for shelter.
During this hour of need students, prefects, teachers, parents and old Boys of D. S. Senanayake College, Colombo congregated to collect and distribute relief aid to those who were affected by the inclement weather.
For ten days continuously, the student, prefects, teachers, parents and old boys have worked tirelessly day and night converting their club house and hostels into kitchens and collections centers making three meals a day for the thousands of displaced flood victims.
Efforts taken by D. S. Senanayake College from the first day of this untimely calamity is testament to the true and undying motto of the college “Country Before Self” which lives among students and past pupils alike and also inculcated in students from a very early stage of their school life at DS.
Mr. R. M. Rathnayake, the newly appointed principal of D.S.Senanayake College and his staff were on the frontlines along with Mr. SusanthaDissanayake, President of the Old Boys Association and his troops, who from day one have been instrumental in collecting food, water, medicine, dry rations, clothes and other necessities required to assist those in need.
The team from DS was also able to reach out and rescue people who were stranded for days with no way of getting out of their houses. The main focus thereafter was to help those people who were neglected as a result of the difficulties in gaining access to them. However, with great determination, collaboration and the teams working around the clock, the task that initially seemed impossible were soon accomplished.
Another significant contribution has been the ability to provide cooked meals to people affected since the beginning of the operation nine days ago, amidst all the other rescue efforts. This speaks volumes of the culture of brotherhood and unity DS boasts about and its ability to unite for a noble cause. The efforts were not limited to Colombo, traveling as far as Amabathale and other affected regional towns, the teams ensured everyone they met was fed.
D. S. Senanayake College is the only multi ethnic school in Sri Lanka to have a Temple, a Kovil, a Chapel and a Mosque within the college premises; encouraging interethnic harmony and facilitating knowledge sharing amongst students of different religions, ethnicities, cultures and backgrounds.
This journey of aiding the affected is just the beginning, the team from DS is now focusing on assisting people reconcile and getting back to their day to day lives which often is a more difficult task when everything you’ve earned and saved have been washed away.
Regardless, they will help endure, they will help reconcile. They have also made a humble plea for dry rations, medical supplies, clothes and sanitary supplies to be handed over to the D.S Senanayeke College OBA Head Quarters before the 28th of May.