The Foundation of Goodness is a holistic rural development model that seeks to bridge the urban-rural divide in Sri Lanka via 10 empowerment divisions across 900+ villages island-wide, and reached over 307,000+ beneficiaries in 2022 alone by way of 15 Empowerment Centres, free of cost.
Having navigated through a few challenging years, the Foundation of Goodness experienced a revitalizing surge in positivity and progress throughout the island in 2023, witnessing the realization of numerous exciting projects. This year has marked a turning point for the Foundation, showcasing resilience and determination.
Here are some of the best highlights at the Foundation of Goodness in 2023 which include the successful implementation of impactful projects that have contributed to the betterment of communities. These endeavors symbolize a renewed commitment to sparking optimism and positive change across the island.
1.Launch of Goodness Radio
This first of its kind web radio show dedicated to good news. Aired every Saturday, the channel is dedicated to bringing positive and uplifting content your way. Good News Radio airs live every Saturday from 12:00 noon to 2:00 pm and can be accessed on the FOG website. The show also opens up opportunities to provide practical media training for rural children covering various aspects of radio broadcasting, including presenting, playlisting, software navigation, and content scheduling.
2. Launch of the Plates of Goodness fundraising recipe book
Plates of Goodness; A fundraising, plant-based recipe book featuring 100 recipes from across the Village Heartbeat Empowerment Programmes of the Foundation of Goodness featuring recipes from Australia based Sri Lankan Chefs, launched at The Doing Good Ball, sponsored and led by OYOB Property Group, on the 24th of July at the Crown Melbourne.
This unique recipe book brings together 100 traditional recipes, passed down through generations and lovingly selected for you by the beneficiaries of the Foundation of Goodness Village Heartbeat Empowerment Centres from rural villages in Jaffna at the northernmost tip of the island to Seenigama in the South.
3. Gaining Global Recognition
Our Founder and Chief Trustee, Mr. Kushil Gunasekera, was selected as World Growth Forums “Person of the Year 2022 from Sri Lanka” by WGF Magazine. Also most recently, Kushil was named the runner-up prize winner of The One Humanitarian Award 2023 by Rotary International District 3450 (Hong Kong)
4. Bat Repair unit
The ‘Kingsgrove Sports – Bat Repair Unit’ at the Foundation of Goodness’s Sports Academy in Seenigama. This one of a kind bat repair facility in rural Sri Lanka will help disadvantaged up and coming cricketers to repair their cricket bats at affordable rates, as most cannot afford to buy new ones, at a time when Sri Lanka’s economic crisis is at its peak.
5. Opening of the University of Vavuniya Multi Sports Complex
The Foundation of Goodness together with University of Vavuniya, has begun its transformational journey of the multi-sports complex as a prominent sports hub for the Northern Province.
This year we completed the Gymnasium, Basketball Court and the Badminton courts. Our goal is to transform it into a prominent sports hub for the Northern Province, serving Mannar, Anuradhapura, and the East Coast. This extended reach will provide diverse communities access to facilities and training opportunities for enhanced excellence and exposure by way of a scientific sports development plan towards a high-performance centre.
6. Expanding our Village Heartbeat Empowerment Centre Network
This year we took great strides in expanding our Village Heartbeat Empowerment Centres by opening 5 new Empowerment centres in Mahiyanganaya in the Badulla District, Trincomalee in the Trincomalee District, Polonnaruwa in the Polonnaruwa District, Ahangama in the Galle District and most recent Centre in Maskeliya in the Nuwera Eliya District.
7. Launching new courses across the VHE’s
Our commitment to uplifting rural communities remains steadfast, as evidenced by our continuous exploration of innovative ways and skills. This year, we introduced a range of exciting new courses, including Japanese classes, housekeeping courses, Beeralu classes, and Sugar flower making classes. Additionally, we initiated crucial development projects, such as the Elder’s Care programme and the recently launched Ocean Care project on Hikkaduwa beach, addressing pressing needs in our communities. To preserve cultural heritage, we also started a new Angampora course at the Polonnaruwa VHE, contributing to the preservation of this traditional art form. These endeavors reflect our ongoing dedication to holistic community development and empowerment.
8. The Doing Good Ball 2023
The OYOB Property Group, has for many years been on a journey of actively serving.
humanity, which began with the attendance of the first “Doing Good” Charity Gala Ball in 2003. This year the ball was held on the 24th of July at the Crown Melbourne. The fund raised at the event will be utilized towards setting up 2 RO plant projects, the Feed the Hungry programme, setting up an ambulance service as well the Essential School supplies programme.
9. Opening RO plants to villages in need
This year, thanks to the generosity of our donors, we successfully established five reverse osmosis water plants at strategic locations across Sri Lanka. These include the Thanthirimalai RO Plant in Anuradhapura, the Bandaragama-Elayapaththuwa RO Plant in Anuradhapura, the Gamini School Nikawewa RO Plant in Polonnaruwa, the Kadiharaya-Wariyapola RO Plant in Kurunegala, and the Kalvilan-Mankulam RO Plant in Mullaitivu. These initiatives mark a significant step towards providing clean and accessible water to communities in need.
10. Sports Tours and Volunteers return!
Due to the pandemic and the economic challenges of the past year, there was a notable decline in sports tours and volunteers, primarily attributed to travel restrictions to Sri Lanka. However, this year brought a sense of excitement and optimism as we were thrilled to welcome numerous teams and volunteers back to the Centre of Excellence and the Sports Academy. The resurgence of participation signifies a positive turn and renewed engagement in sports-related activities, overcoming the setbacks experienced during the challenging times of the pandemic and economic downturn.
11. Sporting Achievements!
In the realm of sports, this year brought numerous achievements across various disciplines, with notable successes in swimming and table tennis. However, one triumph stood out prominently—the Foundation of Goodness Sri Lanka emerged victorious in the International Cricket Academy League tournament held in Delhi. Securing a landmark win, the team triumphed over the Lakshya Indian Academy to claim the title of the inaugural under-17 champions in the international cricket academy league.
12. Launch of Goodnessgetways.com website
We’re excited to introduce the www.goodnessgetaway.com, a new platform that allows you to discover and book a range of activities that not only promise a memorable experience but also contribute to the noble cause of community development. Explore diving, Sri Lankan Cooking, Nature Cruise and many other exciting activities where all proceeds go towards the rural development projects of the Foundation.
Approaching our 25th year of dedicated humanitarian work in Sri Lanka and rural development, we stand at a pivotal juncture filled with reflection and anticipation. The significant milestone marks a quarter-century of unwavering commitment to fostering positive change in the lives of communities. With a legacy of impactful initiatives, the Foundation embraces the future with new hope and a reinforced commitment to bridging the urban-rural divide. As we embark on the journey ahead, the Foundation envisions continued growth, innovation, and collaboration, aiming to uplift and empower rural areas, making a lasting difference in the lives of those we serve. The coming years hold the promise of further transformative endeavours, building on the foundation laid over the past two and a half decades.