Motherஸ்ரீ ලංකා celebrates 12 years of supporting local entrepreneurship

wood carving traditional knowledge Intellectual property craft

The Motherஸ்ரீ ලංකා (MSL) movement was started in 2008 by the Mother Sri Lanka Trust and its dynamic Chairperson Dr. Janaki Kuruppu and is a non-profit, independent charity using a unique operational model of private funding, public sector infrastructure and managed by a group of patriotic, dedicated passionate individuals from the public, private and non-profit sectors.  In 2016, the Board and the Management of the Mother Sri Lanka movement expanded its scope and established the Mother Lanka Foundation which is set up as a non-profit organisation responsible for the movements programs and activities.

The Board of Trustees & Executive Team of Motherஸ்ரீ ලංකා comprise of the following;

  • Dr. Janaki Kuruppu – Chairperson
  • Mr. Thushantha Karunanayake – Truste
  • Mr. Piyadasa Marabage – Trustee
  • Admiral Thisara Samarasinghe – Trustee
  • Prof. Ananda Jayawardena – Trustee
  • Mr. Eastman Narangoda – Trustee
  • Mr. Riaz Saban – Trustee
  • Ms. Samantha De Silva – Trustee
  • Ms. Chandrika Kannangara
  • Mr. Mohideen Saheed
  • Mr. S. Karunakaran
  • Ms. Surangi Fernando
  • Ms. Shameena Pallie
  • Air Chief Marshall Gagan Bulathsinghala
  • Mr. Amrit Canagaretna
  • Ms. Priyadharshini Karunarathne
  • Mr. Devaka Wickremasuriya

The foundation and the trust carries out work under the brand name “Mother ஸ்ரீ ලංකා” with the logo/name written in all three languages and the tagline “My family of twenty million people” has being designed to resemble a movement for everyone from all ethnic and religious groups to work in unity to build a successful future for all.

The Mother ஸ்ரீ ලංකා Story:

Mother ஸ்ரீ ලංකා is the story of how the people of one resilient island nation in the Indian Ocean did not allow thirty long years of terrorism drown their hopes and dreams for their motherland. It is the story of a small group of patriotic citizens, from the private and public sectors who wanted to tell their family of twenty million to hold their heads high in pride, believing in themselves – the story of how a country can overcome bloodshed and rise from the ashes of war, learning from the mistakes of the past, uniting under one flag, as one nation, as one people who believe in their country.

Mother ஸ்ரீ ලංකා adopts a holistic approach touching the lives of future generations from pre-school, through school to university with the aim of making them believe in themselves. Believing that economic empowerment is a great equalizer, its work with urban and rural communities covers gender equality, livelihood development. It also adopts a bottom up approach starting at grass root level with a network across all 25 districts of the country and with the organization operating with negligible overhead and an organization which is transparent in its work and finances having and unblemished track record since 2008. 

Mother ஸ்ரீ ලංකා carries out programs targeting pre-school children, school children and the youth as well as conducts community programs for the most vulnerable segments in society such as impoverished women, aiming at their empowerment, thereby raising awareness among the most influential segments of society aiming at their knowledge enhancement.  The projects are implemented by voluntary members of the movement based in Colombo and in other districts.

One of the unique focus areas of Mother ஸ்ரீ ලංකා is instilling the concept of responsible citizenship among the future generations of our country.  Sadly, although it is a very important need of the hour, we are the first and probably the only organization focusing primarily on this concept.

The Mother ஸ்ரீ ලංකා Network:

Mother ஸ்ரீ ලංකා has an island wide network covering all 9 provinces and 25 districts of the country through a network of over 1000 youth clubs and school clubs In addition, the movement has over 1000 pre-school and school teachers who are currently actively involved in implementing child development and child protection work in all 25 districts of the country.  Mother ஸ்ரீ ලංකා also has a network of leading Sri Lankan personalities from the fields of business, sports, entertainment and academia as Mother ஸ்ரீ ලංකා ambassadors, inducted into the membership of the movement.

Mother ஸ்ரீ ලංකා Project RUN:

Project RUN, named after the acronyms of three powerful components, Responsible Citizenship, Unity and National Pride is a unique concept where children are motivated and encouraged to design projects that helped uplift life and enrich communities in which they live in across the island.

The objectives of Project RUN: Mother ஸ்ரீ ලංකා appreciating the fact that while the country is gaining material development, realizes the dire need to develop the feeling of responsibility among its citizens to appreciate the resources available to them and specifically to take care of public property with more care instances of which are the abuse of the free health system or the free education system or in much simpler terms, how someone is misusing a public toilet, a government office or a public transport facility with callous disregard to the facility or wasting public funds? 

Mother ஸ்ரீ ලංකා feels that the development of a Responsible Citizen concept among youth is essential for the country to move forward.  In Project Run, the school communities involving students, teachers and parents are asked to identify an issue they are facing with respect to a public facility or a public property and are motivated and encouraged to design a creative solution to address this issue. 

Launched with the blessings of the Ministry of Education, MSL Project RUN has become the practical aspect of the Citizen Education subject which will eventually help build responsible citizens.  The project has had an excellent progress with 1640 projects implemented so far since the introduction of this program in the years 2013/14, 2015/16, and 2017/18 covering schools in all 25 districts in Sri Lanka.  Unfortunately due to the Easter Sunday attacks in 2019 and the Covid 19 pandemic in 2020, the program had to be postponed.  Work is already in hand to launch Project RUN for 2020/21. To date, the most successful and sustainable project of MSL is Project RUN.

Mother ஸ்ரீ ලංකා – Protecting Local Craft and marketing a “Love Sri Lanka” range of Sri Lankan Arts & Crafts thereby building livelihoods:

The Mother ஸ்ரீ ලංකා movement’s Love Sri Lanka Project which is designed to Protect Authentic Sri Lankan Products & Empowering Local Craftsmen continues to move from strength to strength amidst an economic downturn caused due to the Covid 19 pandemic.

The Mother ஸ்ரீ ලංකා livelihood development project was launched with the aim of protecting local arts and crafts and industries that help sustain traditional practices.  The main aim of the entire project is to protect Authentic Sri Lankan products which are being pushed out of shelves due to severe competition from imported products and to strengthen and increase the sustainability of the livelihoods of local craftsmen.  

The collection of products which are sold under the sub brand “Love Sri Lanka” with the tagline “100 smiles for your 100 rupees” is one of the most popular brands of Sri Lanka souvenirs with a wide range of products targeting Sri Lankans and tourists.  This unique product range, available at our showrooms at 410/131, Bauddhaloka Mawatha, Colombo 7 & 614, Sri Jayawardenepura Mawatha, Kotte, while protecting traditional industries are designed to suit the current consumer needs and includes some world class products that one can be proud to own.

Dr. Janaki Kuruppu, Founder / Chairperson of Mother ஸ்ரீ ලංකා says “I always make it a point to interact with all my suppliers and advice them on product design and sustainable business practices.  In one of my interactions with 2 women entrepreneurs once when we visited the supplier in their home in Polonnaruwa, I wanted to buy some of their products for myself, and I paid them double of what they were asking for.  That small gesture, brought such a beautiful smile to her face, which really made an impact in my mind.  It was this incident that made me come up with the tagline “100 smiles for your 100 Rupees”, because I have seen the genuine smiles that we are able to bring to their face by the support we give.  So when you buy one of these products from us, even if it is a few rupees more, you should feel glad that you are bringing a smile to someone less privileged.  Also, we are a 100% non-profit organisation, so there are no shareholders who are trying to make a profit out of this project”.

One of the common weaknesses identified in most of the livelihood development support programs is the inability to help the entrepreneur understand market trends and access local and international markets.  Mother ஸ்ரீ ලංකා’s livelihood development project is designed to address exactly this gap and engages in giving them access to markets while guiding them in design, packaging and marketing of their products to earn fair market prices.

Mother ஸ்ரீ ලංකා also believes that economic empowerment of women is the one of the most successful approaches to gender equality.  Hence, most of the micro entrepreneurs supported by Mother ஸ்ரீ ලංකා are female, while there’s a high number of very talented males who are making a significant contribution to the project.  Currently, approximately 125 micro entrepreneurs from 10 districts with over 1,000 directly employed and over 5,000 families indirectly benefit from this MSL initiative.  The product range include Clay, Brass, Leather, Handloom, Batik, Cane, Lace, Stationary, Eco Friendly and Organic products, food and beverages, herbs and medicines and personal care products.

Established in 2008, Mother ஸ்ரீ ලංකා movement’s mission is be a catalyst to generate “Good Citizenry” behavior patterns among Sri Lankans through their Spiritual, Educational, Socio-Economical and Cultural development.  Mother Sri Lanka (MSL) is a non-profit, independent, non-political organization set up as a 100% local organization managed on a honorary basis by a group of committed Sri Lankan professionals from the public and private sectors for the benefit of all Sri Lankans.   All MSL projects are financed by generous donors in the private sector, international Govt. / Non- Govt. sectors, philanthropists, as well as through fund raising programs and from the sale of Sri Lankan arts and crafts.

If you are interested in obtaining more details on Mother ஸ்ரீ ලංකා please visit its showrooms at 410/131, Bauddhaloka Mawatha, Colombo 7 or 614, Sri Jayawardenepura Mawatha, Kotte or contact them on 0777 325302 or 011 2696492.