Student Exchange from the North to the South

The American Centre has worked with the Foundation of Goodness to sponsor North/ South student exchanges in an effort to promote unity and harmony across Sri Lanka and give children and youth from communities in the North and South to meet, visit each other’s home towns in order to build friendships and new understanding about each other.

Most recently, the American Centre made it possible for the students studying at the FoG IT Centre in Oddusuddan as well as the Dress Making and Beauty Culture students from the Kilinochchi Harmony Centre to visit the MCC Centre of Excellence and Sports Academy in Seenigama.

The group of 36 arrived in Seenigama on the 1st of July but due to the late arrival time, they immediately had dinner and settled in for the night at the Sports Academy. Waking up on the 2nd, it was time to discover Seenigama and meet new friends from the South.

All morning, the team had an interactive session with the students who were attending the Tamil Language courses at FoG which gave them southerners a perfect opportunity to make practical use of their subject matter. The students introduced themselves to each other and had a discussion about their cultures and traditions during which time the Seenigama locals presented their visitors with traditional foods and sweets made in the South of Sri Lanka.

The group went on to teach each other Tamil and Sinhala songs which was followed by a lot of fun as they sang and danced together before the hosts took their visitors for a tour of the MCC Centre of Excellence and all the different activities that take place there before visiting the Sports Academy in the evening.

On the 3rd, the northern team visited the tsunami memorial, a turtle hatchery and visited Galle to explore the coastal town before heading back North filled with new experiences and friendships.

It cannot be emphasized enough that these exchanges play a vital role in breaking down barriers between the communities that were aggravated by years of conflict. A simple visit of this nature can have such a great impact on their outlook on life as well as their attitudes towards fellow Sri Lankans.

True reconciliation can only be achieved through mutual respect and understanding, when the communities cease to look at each other with suspicion and fear. The ability to meet each other, make new friends and see where and how they live is essential in building friendship and acceptance between these groups.

This is beautifully illustrated in the letter sent to us by Arnold Jenoosan who participated in the trip as a coordinator;


Dear All,

North Team which included the Students who are following classes in Kilinochchi and Oddusuddan ,teachers and myself visited Seenigama for Students Exchange program which was scheduled from 1st to 3rd of July 2016.

First of all I would like to thank you all for thinking about the Students and providing this wonderful opportunity to them.

Among those students many have never visited any places outside the Northern region. For them this is gem an opportunity to visit Colombo Galle Face ,Seenigama ,Hikkaduwa,Galle Fort. Specially the visiting of the sectors at the MCC was really a must needed one for everybody who are involved with FoG.

We are really amazed by the Hospitality of everyone at Seenigama.We have been treated really well from the moment we reached the Sports accommodation to Sunday afternoon when we left.

I would like to Thank Kushil Sir on behalf of the Team for this Opportunity,
Thank You very much sir you and FoG are really a gift for the people in the North.Not many have helped and cared for them like you. 

It is my duty to thank Suranga sir ,Fazana miss, Edin anna for spending there time to arrange this program.
Suranga sir thank you very much for coming to Seenigama to meet us and for all the help you have done for us.
And fazana miss students really missed you very much.They were asking me that where is that miss who used to come to North and talk with us.

I would like to thank Ravindra aiya for making all the arrangements for us at seenigama.He was with us until we go to Udumulla accommodation ,coming with us showing us our rooms checking whether we are ok with our accommodation.
Thank you very Ravindra aiya for all the help you have done when we there.

I would like to thank the Tamil teacher for receiving us at MCC and arranging those programs in the short time.We were very happy to witness that tamil speech by one of your girl and the song by your girls.

I would like to thank sampath sir for taking his to meet and talk with our students.

Thank you very much for those who are incharge of our meals.We have been provided very delicious food throughtout the short stay at seenigama.There was alot of love and care when we given food.

I would like to thank Sathees anna who came with us from colombo and helping us to overcome the language issue.Without him we would have struggled to communicate with others and his really helped us to talk with everybody and sharing our experiences.

During my stay at seenigama I could see smiles in everybodies faces and they treated us really well not as strangers just as friends.
Students felt very surprized to see the sinhala people with such characters as this is their first chance to meet them this much closely.They felt badly for seeing sinhala people with the fake identity which created becoz of the war for the past years.

On the whole I would like to share my heartfelt Thanks to each and everyone who worked for the success of this event.You have made those days unforgettable to us.We enjoyed each and every moment during our stay at seenigama.
Please excuse me if I failed to mention anyone’s Names.
Thank You so much.


We are incredibly privileged to be able to organize and host these exchange programmes which are crucial in developing close relationships between the various Sri Lankan communities and in achieving lasting peace while creating a beautiful future for our country.


03rd August 2016



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