The educational centre EDC and the Women’s Unit give chances especially to children and women to underprivileged families in the local area. The centre provides additional classes and vocational training – free of charge. Therefore, children and women learn new skills and make experiences, which can change their life and give them better opportunities.
In the following examples, students of the educational centre and women from the women’s unit tell their story about their life earlier and how the education, training and work here have changed it forever.
Priyangani (49) is working since mid 2014 as the tailoring supervisor at the Tailoring Unit of the Women Centre, as part of the Nature Volunteers Association. Before, she worked more that 10 years in the garment factories e.g. as quality controler and supervisor.
Well, my life was a lot tougher. Before starting at the EDC Women's Unit I was working in a garment factory as a chief supervisor, looking after 200 women. I was responsible for production elements, like the material, cutting and sewing section. Working more than 12 hours a day, under a lot of pressure and in the end I did not have enough salary to support my family.
Chathu (26) is the English teacher at the Education Development Centre for all grades. She just got married in 2015 and lives with her family in Pinhena, a village near Aluthgama.
My childhood was very difficult because my father died very early in 1999 and left my mother who used to be a housewife alone to bring my younger brothers and me up. We had no support and were struggling to survive. Even though I really would have to study, but this was impossible outside of normal school because we did not have any money. After I finished my A-Levels in 2007, I was really interested in learning English but I had to stop studying and worked in a phone shop for a year to support my family.
My younger brother found out about a free education institute in the area, the EDC, where both of us started a Computer course. This made me so happy to be able to learn something and I also entered the English and German classes. I really know what it means to be able to get free education and I value this to this day. These reminiscences are always in my heart. When I finished my courses, I became a teacher here. So really I am one of the first EDC students and became a teacher, thanks to this free education.