Global Tamil Forum And Sarvodaya Shramadana Movement Assist Flood Affected Communities

The Global Tamil Forum (GTF) in partnership with Sarvodaya Shramadana Movement conducted medical camps over ten days, in the floods affected rural villages of Kalutara and Matara Districts, concluding on the 11th of July 2017.

Having witnessed from overseas, the devastation caused by the recent floods in the South of Sri Lanka, and the agony and personal loss suffered by the people, Sri Lankans living overseas who are members of the GTF felt that they must come to the assistance of their brethren in Sri Lanka, in their time of need.

Although Sri Lanka has exceptional health services throughout the country, the Sri Lankans overseas who are settled in various parts of the world came together to contribute their medical expertise to the people in Sri Lanka, thereby building bridges between the Tamil and Sinhala communities, and uniting the communities through health and healing, a human need that transcends ethnicity, language, race and religion.

This initiative is also particularly to demonstrate the Tamil diaspora’s willingness to bring their capacity and capability to help build trust between communities.

The goals of this initiative were to improve mutual relationships, humanise the other and signal positive intentions and also commitment to avoid conflict escalation. Aim is also to help build working trust by addressing easier but important day to day issues, which in turn would allow parties to address root causes of conflicts through dialogue and negotiations.

During their stay in Sri Lanka, the doctors attended to approximately seven hundred and eighty patients. They were welcomed warmly by the people in all locations and the overseas medical professionals have offered to return, to provide medical care and attention during any time of future need.

There were seventeen medical professionals from various disciplines and from eight countries - Australia, Bahrain, Canada, France, Germany, Norway, United Kingdom and the United States - who volunteered. They were joined by local professionals in Sri Lanka.

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