SLWB is proud to support the important work of the following organizations:
Room to Read
Room to Read collaborates with communities and local governments across Asia and Africa to develop literacy skills and a habit of reading among primary school children, and support girls to complete secondary school with the life skills they will need to succeed in school and beyond. As part of its efforts in Sri Lanka, Room to Read has focused on constructing schools, establishing libraries and publishing children’s books to ensure all children have access to the materials they need to complete their education. It is also engaged in closing the gender equality gap in Sri Lanka, having launched its Girls’ Education program in 2006 in which more than 1,500 girls participated. It recently launched the Reading and Writing Instruction program to improve the quality of literacy learning in schools.
As Canada’s original literacy organization, Frontier College has helped millions of Canadians improve their literacy skills since 1899. It recruits and train volunteers to work with children, youth and adults in a great array of settings as well as helping other community-based organizations set up and run literacy programs for their own participants. Frontier College has been working with Aboriginal communities for over 40 years and it currently works with almost 60 Aboriginal communities in Manitoba, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Quebec and Ontario. Since 2005, Frontier College has worked with these communities to develop meaningful and relevant summer literacy programs for children and youth. Camps involve a variety of hands-on, interactive literacy games, story-telling, arts and crafts, drama, music, and cultural activities to create a fun and engaging experience for children from 5 to 16 years of age.
As part of the Samadhana 2012, SLWB is also proud to participate with PEN Canada on its Empty Chair Campaign. Despite the conclusion of the armed conflict in 2009, freedom of expression continues to be curtailed in Sri Lanka and journalists continue to face censorship, threats, forced expulsions and even death. SLWB’s partnership with PEN Canada is in support of the many courageous men and women who continue to speak out and write about post-war realities in Sri Lanka.
Through the Empty Chair Campaign, SLWB supports PEN’s efforts to highlight recent instances violations of freedom of expression including:
- Prageeth Eknaligoda, a political analyst, journalist and cartoonist of Lanka News who was reported missing on January 24, 2010 and his whereabouts are still unknown following his articles in favour of defeated opposition candidate Sarath Fonseka ahead of the Sri Lankan presidential elections in January, 2010.
- Gnanasundaram Kuhanathan, News Editor of Uthayan, who was attacked by two unidentified men on July 29, 2011 for unknown reasons.
- Frederica Jansz, Editor of The Sunday Leader who has been receiving death threats for having testified against the Sri Lankan Government’s Defense Secretary in the trial of former Army Commander General Sarath Fonseka.