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.

Sports Success Stories from Rural Sri Lanka!

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“An athlete cannot run with money in his pockets. He must run with hope in his heart and dreams in his head.” – Emil Zatopek

Time and time again our beneficiaries from the Foundation of Goodness’s Sports Academy attached to the OYOB Centre of Excellence in Seenigama as well as the Village Heartbeat Empowerment Centres have showcased a multitude of talents in the sporting world, reaching greater heights from the national level to the international stage. 

National Cricket Star, 17-year-old Vishmi Gunaratne who was appointed Captain of the Sri Lanka Under-19 team to participate in the Women’s Under-19 Quadrangular Cricket Tournament in India, is one of our very own beneficiaries who attended training sessions at the Sports Academy in Seenigama. This was the first ever international assignment for the National Under-19 team, and it was an invaluable experience that exposed them to a host of new challenges. 

Vishmi is also one of the recipients of this year’s prestigious Marylebone Cricket Club Sports Scholarship awards, which is facilitated by the Foundation of Goodness! Since 2008, the MCC Cricket Scholarships have enabled aspiring sporting stars from rural Sri Lanka to reach their full potential. The Foundation of Goodness is extremely proud of Vishmi for having proven to be an all-rounder by not only excelling on the stage of Cricket, but also by achieving best results of 9As at the recently concluded 2021 GCE Ordinary Level Examination. 

 

Next our focus shifts to another Vishmi but this time, one that shines in the field of Tennis. Talented Tennis player Vishmi Serasinghe is proudly sponsored by the Foundation of Goodness and our Trustee Mr. Ashan Malalasekara. A student of the Ave Maria College in Negombo, Vishmi has excelled in the game of Tennis by becoming the Sri Lankan Under-18 2nd seed.

Among her most recent achievements is the World Tennis Tour Junior stage competition by the International Tennis Federation (ITF) held in Nepal this year, where she reached the 2nd round beating India’s Hridayeshi Pai 7-7 in the 1st round. She ended the 2nd round 6-2-6 against Ishi Maheshwari of India. The Foundation of Goodness is humbly proud of her excellent achievements as an upcoming Tennis Player. 

Yet another athlete sponsored by Trustee Ashan Malalasekera is Amasha de Silva, who became the 2019 SouthAsian Junior Champion in 100m and 200m, winning gold for SriLanka and also obtaining silver at the Asian Championship in both her races held in Japan in the same year. She also won the bronze medal at the IAAF World Junior Championship which was held in Finland in 2018. We at the Foundation of Goodness are delighted to have had the opportunity to support Amasha on her journey since 2018. Amasha is also the reigning Women’s 100m National Champion, having taken home the title in 2020, 2021 and 2022.

Our sporting stars have conquered not just the Cricket and Tennis playing fields, but they have also shined in the field of Athletics. One such aspiring athlete from rural Sri Lanka is S. Dinojan.

Promising Pole Vaulter Dinojan is the first athlete from the Eastern Provincial Education Zone to reach success and he is also the first student from his school to do so in 20-years. The Foundation of Goodness has supported his inspiring athletic career by way of donating essential sports gear including a pair of spikes.

Dinojan has excelled in the event of Pole Vault amidst many hardships. Initially, he did not even have access to a proper set up to practice Pole Vault. With much dedication and commitment to reaching his best potential, Dinojan used to improvise with a makeshift Pole Vault set up using bamboo sticks. This is his inspiring journey behind becoming the first ever most successful Pole Vaulter from the Eastern Province!

 

Thakshila Dissanayake is another aspiring athlete from rural Sri Lanka who has excelled at the school level in terms of track events. Talented up and coming athlete Thakshila is a beneficiary at our Village Empowerment Centre in Kotmale. She won the Gold Medal in the 400m Hurdles Event at the All Island School Games this year. A proud student of Cp/Kot/ Gamini Dissanayake National School, Thakshila has a long way to go in her athletic career. 

 

The Foundation of Goodness is determined to bag a few medals at the 2028 Olympics by empowering brilliantly skilled athletes from rural disadvantaged communities, whilst we also push our skillful cricketers, swimmers, tennis players and many more sporting stars to reach their best potential and make mother Sri Lanka proud!

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