The English teaching programme is available for disadvantaged children who are not able to have the same education as children who do not live in poverty. This project not only encourages children to develop skills that will help them to achieve their future goals, but, conversing with fluent English speakers, will greatly improve their chances for future employment. Unlike other countries, Sri Lanka’s education system is still developing, schools do not have the same readily available resources that school in the western world have. Families cannot afford to buy school supplies and the schools do not have the money to be able to provide them either. Within most other countries in the world, education starts from the age of 4 up to 18 years old when their education can then be taken further and there is the opportunity to go to University.

However, within Sri Lanka, many government schools, particularly within rural areas, receive minimal government funding, leading to a vicious cycle within the education system, whereby, children are taught by teachers, who have very poor English speaking, reading and writing skills. Due to a lack of funding within the education system, teachers are not able to further their education and develop their English teaching and so they are only able to pass on what little English skills they can to the children. In turn, this means that the children are also given the same path as they are unable to develop their skills as there is no money to allow them to and the vicious cycle continues. The classrooms which the children learn in, can be filled with between 40 to 60 children. With this depravation within the education system, many classroom are often chaotic. There is much more noise and visual stimulation can cause eom students discomfort or anxiety and to this makes it harder for children to focus. Furthermore, it makes it harder for teachers to give instructions as they are constantly trying to encourage children to listen. Therefore, teaching styles suffer and children are not taking in all of the information that they need as there is a lack of inclusion and attention. With this lack of inclusion, children are missing the vital child teacher relationship.

The ability to speak English within Sri Lanka is becoming of growing importance, as tourism and migrant workers from the middle east becomes the largest source of income. With such large classes where children are not able to thrive and learn, it only allows for the middle and upper class children in Sri Lanka to be able to afford private English lessons. Therefore, most low-income families are already set up tp fail. This is why one of our main aims, is to give deprived children, the same opportunities as children from wealthy families and so they have the chance to develop their ability to speak English.



There are two schools within the programme that allows volunteers to teach English. The after school education programme which works within communities that were displaces by the 2004 Tsunami - known as Tsunami villages and the temple schools, where volunteers have the chance to teach buddhist monks. The tsunami village project is the main teaching project that volunteers take part in. They work, in a number of tsunami villages, which are a community of houses that were donated by the government and international charities to accomodate families who lost their homes after the tsunami. The majority of men in the villages are fishermen, who earn a very little income. Children attend local government schools during the mornings and by the afternoons, the volunteers provide free after school education, teaching English. The teaching takes place in makeshift classrooms or community centres where we encourage volunteers to make lessons as engaging and interactive ass possible, by being creative and proactive when preparing lessons.

The presence of volunteers gives the children an insight into different cultures; a global perspective they greatly benefit from. This programme, is available from 3pm to 6pm each afternoon from Monday to Friday. The class sizes vary from 4 to 12 children per class. Depending on the volunteers and how many children there are, volunteers teach between 2-4 children at a time. Furthermore, around 3 to 6 classes in each community are running, again depending on the number of volunteers. Each class is divided based on the children’s level of English. The first two hours are spent teaching English, with the last hour being allocated for games and activities to create a fun environment. We have found that the children form closer bonds to the volunteers when they aren’t just being taught English, but when the children are able to swap roles and teach the volunteers the games they play, such as cricket or traditional games, like duck duck goose and stuck in the mud. Having these bonds is essential for children as it teaches them about social skills, healthy friendships, developing trust and self-esteem, all skills that can equip them for their future. Furthermore, this allows children to be children and have a break from learning and so they can de-stress and have fun. If there are any ideas or activities that the volunteers need assistance with, a local coordinator is on hand to support them and hep execute any ideas that they may have.



The second teaching programme is the temple school project, whereby, volunteers have the option to complete afternoons with Buddhist monks. Many of the monks only speak very little English. The classes are run, usually in the morning, around 8:30am to 10:30am. In return for the teaching, the monks teach volunteers about their religion and way of life. Moreover, the temple schools also welcome poor children from the community to come and join them. There tends to be 15 to 18 students in each class, aged from 6 to 18 years old. Ensuring that the teaching project has the basic set of resources for the children and for the volunteers to plan their activities, is one of the most important parts. This includes, providing stationary, exercise books, plain paper, whiteboards, marker pens and any other basic resources that are needed. If volunteers require any additional resources, there are some local shops which provide these. No teaching experience is required to win this programme, although it is an advantage. Generally speaking, as long as volunteers are pro-active, enthusiastic and have lots of positive energy, they can create a lot of development within their time at the project. We expect volunteers to spend an hour to two each day preparing for the following days lessons.



The childcare and skill development project in Sri Lanka brightens up the lives of young children by creating a vital and important contribution to their daily lives. It is important to note, that while the majority of the children within the orphanages are orphans, many have been rescued from broken and abusive families and homes, while others have been abandoned by families due to the lack of funds to support and care for them. Poverty is one of the most prominent causes that leads families to feel that they cannot adequately provide for their children or give them the start in life and education that they deserve. Therefore, the main objective of the project is to help, encourage and care for those children and provide them with as much confidence to help them maximise their potential. We currently support three orphanages. The main ones are a girl’s child development Centre, which houses 30 girls, aged between 5 to 14 years of ages.

Shakthi Foundation

Shakthi Foundation is a Non-Governmental Organisation, which was established within Ambalangoda. The foundation was established to act as a leading force for developing communities and wild life conversation projects that are supported throughout Sri Lanka. Shakthi Foundation was born in May 2013, thanks to donations and contributions that were provided by Shakthi Eurasia Exchange private Limited; a commercial and business based company.

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Shakthi Foundation
No: 25/A, Nugethuduwa Road, Polwaththa, Ambalangoda.
Sri Lanka.

Phone: (+94) 0915701004 
Mobile: (+94) 0766277711
Email: help@shakthifoundation.com
Web: http://shakthifoundation.org 

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