I am running to raise awareness and funding for children living in plantation communities supported by The T.E.A. Project. Children are now disproportionately affected by the unfolding economic crisis in Sri Lanka. Contemporary challenges of increasing public debt and fiscal deficit have impacted the availability and affordability of essential commodities such as food, fuel, fertilisers, and medicine. These, in turn, have disrupted livelihoods and reduced household incomes across the country. Sri Lanka's food production and harvest are expected to drop by at least 40 to 50 per cent in the coming months, further deteriorating the situation. Families are already struggling to afford food, with 70 per cent of households reporting reduced food consumption. Halted distribution of free supplementary food for malnourished children and the faltering provision of nutritious school meals will result in more children suffering from acute malnutrition. The alarming food security and nutrition situation is further threatened by the reduced availability of safe water, increasing the risk of diarrhoeal diseases. Critical shortages of medicine have severely impacted all essential health services. There are ongoing stock-outs of crucial drugs affecting pregnant and lactating women and children, likely to continue for several months.
Learning has also been severely interrupted – many schools re-opened following some of the region's most extended pandemic-related school closures – disrupting education for 4.8 million children. School attendance rates have fallen dramatically and are likely to fall further with the halt in school meals – often the only nutritious food source for many marginalised children. High inflation and shrinking fiscal space could mean that poverty doubles in the next 24 months, with 93 per cent of those below the poverty line in the rural and the estate sector. Sri Lanka’s fragmented social protection system and several programmes do not reach the most vulnerable. Many harmful coping mechanisms have been reported, including the institutionalisation of children, school absenteeism/drop-out, limited food intake, aggravated the consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic, and the current socio-economic and political crisis.
The ongoing crisis in Sri Lanka has increased the vulnerability of communities supported by The T.E.A. Project. With little to zero income, they are literally 'offline', without access to online shopping or education. More vulnerable to abuse. Children desperately need nutrition, education, mental stimulation and improvement in their healthy being. The T.E.A. Project is organising emergency F.O.O.D. (Fueling Opportunities, Outcomes & Diet) drops for more than 100 vulnerable tea estate families. T.E.A. donates weekly dry rations, including rice, dhal, sugar, potatoes, soya and tea packets. Additionally, T.E.A. is giving out study packs to provide education support. A little goes a long way in Sri Lanka. The average cost of a rice packet meal is 400 rupees; that's only about 0.88p! But suppose you compare that to the average daily wage for a tea plantation picker of 750 rupees per day. In that case, you can see what a tremendous amount of money that is...and that's before electric, water bills, travel expenses etc. All donations will go directly to supporting relief operations at The Cloud - A Centre for Children's Empowerment in Hanthanna, Sri Lanka. For more information about The T.E.A. Project, please visit www.theteaproject.org. Thank you for visiting my Givey page. When you make your donation through Givey, The T.E.A. Project receives 100% of the donation. Your details are safe with Givey, and donating is completely secure. They never share your email address with any third parties except the Charity you donate to.