Who we are?

Maithree Children Development Centre takes care of over 20 female children who have been removed from their families due to harassment, abuse or abandonment. Whilst their basic needs are looked in to, we have undertaken the serious task of developing them as responsible citizens. We have a staff of 05 persons to care for these precious little children. Maithree is registered with the All Ceylon Buddhist Congress the Child Care and Probation Department.

Our centre had been established in 1959 under the Ceylon Buddhist Congress and housed 25 children. It received donations from many generous donors but as it came under renovations in February 2008, it had to be closed-down temporarily. As a result, the children had to be relocated to Wijewardena Balika Children's Home in Panadura.

In October 2008, a new Board of Management / Trustees was appointed to continue renovation and development of the center. It was reopened on June 08, 2009.

The occupant children who have undergone much hardship for reasons beyond their control, are the future of our country. Therefore, we appreciate your kind and unstinted support towards the provision of the best facilities to support them to achieve their true potential.

These children have been fed, clothed, immunized and educated over the years with the help of generous individuals and organizations.

Over the years the centre and the team who serve the children have endured many seasons of challenge and difficulty and grown into its towering reputation for quality care and long term commitment to the lives of these children's spiritual, emotional, medical, dental, educational and human needs. By operating the residential home and pre-school and all the various occupational and recreational facilities, we have become the voice and face of Hope for these children. The older children are provided with standard national education at the nearby government school. We are approved to enroll children between the ages of 5-12.

Voluntary Teachers share their knowledge in Math, English, Sinhala, Sewing, Art and Music with the children. A hired Dancing Teacher trains our kids in dance. These wonderful children are trained to prepare meals and tend to the garden. Each morning they have an exercise session of half an hour before they leave for school in the neighborhood. Once they return from school, they have an hour's play-time. By 6.00pm they will be ready for religious observances. For further, spiritual development, they attend the weekly Dhamma School at the Buddhist Temple right next to the center. We also have a Talent Development Club which helps them to harness their talents in leadership and organizing activities. In addition, they are allowed to take part in various school and Dhamma School activities.

Emotionally and physically scarred, the future for these orphans, abandoned or abused children is a bleak reminder of lost hope. Our Child Development Centre has become a sanctuary of love, laughter and hope rather than despair for these less fortunate children. We have been able to restore the individuality and dignity of abandoned children through our programs.

Our child development center gives abandoned children a path forward in their struggle for wholeness. They have food to eat, clean water to drink, a bed to sleep in and heart felt love to grow and develop in. With your help, we can provide food, clothing, shelter, medical care, and education. Along with the basic human daily needs of these children, we work to build an extended safety net, to provide education, vocational training and mentoring, so that they have meaningful hopes for a brighter future.

Basically these abandoned, abused, orphaned or helpless children are like any other child in the world. They like to play, enjoy an education and good family relationships. They long for the day when they will have a good family to belong to where love is felt, where there is understanding and where there is the security of daily meals and no more fear and loneliness.

Our child development centre provides loving care around the clock, every day of the year to children who need care, protection, love, warmth, education and company. We provide a safe haven from the cruel streets - a place to grow and be a part of a family.

We provide hot meals to children every day serving protean supplemented nutritious meals to grateful children. No meal is brought in to the center from outside as a policy. Dedicated teachers provide eager students with the knowledge and skills they require to become self-sufficient, healthy citizens.

Sustainable health initiatives including immunization, simple antibiotics, treated mosquito nets and instituting basic sanitation protocols are vital to the survival of abandoned children. Clean water provides a source of life to children. Through our center, some less fortunate children can now live a healthier life and look forward to a brighter future.

The parents of these kids are allowed to visit them once a week according to legal instructions. With the consent of court, during school holidays, they are allowed to go home. Each year, they are taken on a few trips such as a day at the beach and the recent visit to the Mount Lavinia Hotel where an event related to the Wolrd Children's Day took place. Here they met the first lady and the President's son who is a member of parliament. All national events celebrated in the island celebrated at Maithree adding so much colour to the lives of these innocents. One such example is the Vesak Tour they experience each year.

Children at Maithree are recruited purely based on court decisions. The income levels of parents or relatives is never considered. Therefore, kids of all income categories are given an equal opportunity in terms of enrolment. When they reach 12, they are returned to their families with court consent or sent to other homes. Whenever there are court hearings, the kids are accompanied by center officials.

Maithree does everything possible to restore the lives of these shattered children. In this regard, the center hires the services of a skilled visiting child psychologist for counseling.

Each year, our kids are encouraged to participate in various competitions connected with the World Children's Day organized by the Child Care and Probation Department. These include drama, dancing, music, oratory, and art contests. ACBC conducts a Sports Day each year and Maithree sends-out a team to compete. A tent is constructed by each such center / home and it turns-out to be a fun activity for children who look forward to this annual event.

Every year, the department conducts a competition to uplift the standards of child development centers island-wide and Maithree continues to obtain an 'A' grade without fail. Here, the centers are evaluated on more than 20 different attributes or areas. Once a month, a maintenance team visits the center to attend to the interior of the building and the garden so that the center is maintained in a commendable state.

Every effort is taken to create a homely environment at the center so that the occupants never feel that they are residing in a children's home. The staff at both the school and the Dhamma School have very specifically informed that Maithree is not a children's home.

Hope for the future is built on a foundation of loving care, adequate nutrition, health care, education and vocational training. These services are combined to provide these children with the life skills necessary to replace fear with love; poverty with self-sufficiency; and despair with hope!