In October 2019 we opened the FARS Chanmugam Home for Young Ladies in Ethul Kotte, just outside Colombo. Our aim was to provide a home for girls over 18 who had left school and wanted to continue their education. The girls living here previously lived in our Home in Wanathamulla but had outgrown that environment. 

We wanted to give these young women the chance to continue in a safe environment, with support from us, to allow them to pursue further education and careers.

Our girls come mainly from a poverty filled village background; an environment that often leads them to have narrow expectations as to what they can achieve.

We have always encouraged the children in our projects to have realistic dreams for their future and we are committed to helping them to try to achieve their ambitions. With these young women, we make sure to spend time with each individual, learning and understanding their unique personalities and capabilities to learn how we can best help.

We now have young women studying in a number of different spheres including an undergraduate studying IT, and another studying journalism at the Sri Lankan College of Journalism, plus others in programmes for teacher training and a non vocational course in cookery.

The Home has a warden and an assistant warden to help manage the property and to do the cooking and cleaning. The young women also help with the cooking, cleaning, washing, gardening and the oldest ones help in managing the finances and setting rules. We ask them to hold these responsibilities in the home to help them learn some independence and basic living skills - things nobody has shown them before, so that they can eventually learn to take care of themselves. Each one is given an allowance for their clothes, personal effects and travel and they are in charge of their own budgets. We hope this will provide them with a good grounding in skills that will help them in later life.

These great young women are becoming role models for the other children we help and support. It helps the younger girls to understand that anyone, irrespective of their background, can achieve their dreams.

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