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PRESS RELEASE
Contact: Leah Robinson, Director of Communication


One Sri Lanka Foundation Announces 6 Million Rupees (US$60,000) Grant For De-Mining Efforts In Sri Lanka
The foundation dedicated to converting “mine fields to rice fields” says that the project has widespread support amongst US Citizens and Sri Lankan emigrants alike.

Walnut Creek, California – April 4th, 2003 -- One Sri Lanka Foundation, a foundation dedicated to the de-mining efforts in Sri Lanka announced today the grant of US$60,000 to The Halo Trust (USA), Inc--a charity specializing in the removal of the debris of war-- for the removal of Land Mines in the war affected areas in Sri Lanka. The initial efforts will be undertaken along the Point Pedro road in the Jaffna peninsula, the first of several locations earmarked to be cleared of land mines and UXO’s (Unexploded Ordinances).

One Sri Lanka Foundation, in partnership with The Humpty Dumpty Institute and the Office of the Mine Action Initiative and Partnerships of the US State Department has been actively raising funds for the eradication of land mines in the Island nation of Sri Lanka.The Chairman of the foundation, Mr. K. “Suri” Suriyakumar stated, “This is a tremendous step towards the elimination of land mines in Sri Lanka. We are very encouraged with the progress we have made within a short period of time towards this great cause and we are very thankful to our partners for their assistance.”

Ralph Cwerman, President of the Humpty Dumpty Institute stated, "This first phase of funding marks another success in the Humpty Dumpty Institute's growing number of projects around the world, including Sri Lanka, Azerbaijan, Armenia, Lebanon, Eritrea and Mozambique. We are determined to assist our partners in the Sri Lanka project to raise substantial funds to declare Sri Lanka “mine-free” as soon as possible. We will be working with the One Sri Lanka Foundation and HALO Trust very closely in the next months in order to achieve our common goals.”

This project has also received strong support from the U.S. State Department. "We commend the One Sri Lanka Foundation and the Humpty Dumpty Institute for their generous contribution to help rid Sri Lanka of the landmines that threaten its innocent civilians and hinder post-conflict reconstruction," said James Lawrence, Director of the Office of Mine Action Initiatives and Partnerships in the U.S. Department of State's Bureau of Political-Military Affairs. "These two organizations exemplify how U.S. citizens can effectively reinforce government efforts to secure peace for the beleaguered people of another nation. This is truly civic society in action."

The desk manager for South and South East Asia of HALO Mr. Simon Conway noted, “Since its inception, One Srilanka Foundation has worked very closely with the HALO Trust to get a better understanding of the needs for the de-mining efforts in Sri Lanka. We are indeed encouraged by their efforts.”

The President of HALO USA, Mr. Nigel Robinson stated, “This is a true partnership in action and the benefits will be reaped by those most in need – the Sri Lankan community who have endured 19 years of civil war and are now searching for peace.”

The check for US $ 60,000 is to be handed over to The Halo Trust in a private ceremony to be held at the Colombo Hilton Hotel in Sri Lanka on 11th of April 2003. In a related effort, the Rotary Club of Colombo West in Sri Lanka has just reported they have raised a total of $5,000 US dollars to support the efforts of the One Sri Lanka Foundation.


About One Sri Lanka Foundation
Founded in June 2002, the Foundation is committed to developing and implementing humanitarian projects in Sri Lanka that will transform the “Seeds of devastation into Seeds of Restoration”. Its current mission is to raise funds from individual donors, charitable institutions and non-profit organizations across the world to completely eliminate the land mine menace in Sri Lanka.

For more information about the foundation, please visit http://www.onesrilanka.org


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