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December 2009

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In SmallTalk this month ...

Building for the future

 

Resilient Rice 


 

Hopes for Boats

 

 


Inspiring handicrafts  

   

Dear Supporter

Although Christmas is a time of celebration, Boxing Day, for me, will always be a day of remembrance following the 2004 tsunami. This natural disaster claimed more than 230,000 lives and devastated communities in eleven countries. In the past five years, our rebuilding process has produced some overwhelming stories. In this special edition of Small Talk, I would like to share with you examples of the positive work we've done to restore livelihoods and reduced people's vulnerability.  

 
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Building back better

The tsunami devastated more than 100,000 households along the eastern, southern and western Sri Lankan coastline. The temptation was to rebuild quickly. We resisted this knee-jerk reaction and instead, we've ensured that homes have been built to last and communities are trained in sustainable building practices. Read more here

Resilient rice

With crops wiped out by seawater and land lost to salinity, farmers faced destitution in the aftermath of the tsunami. In Sri Lanka's Hambantota district, 40-year-old Ranjith has been battling the sea's impact on his coastal rice crops for more than a decade. 

Discover how we've helped farmers such as Ranjith to re-establish their crops by introducing saline tolerant rice.

Repairing livelihoods 

Working together to rebuild livelihoods has been a strong motivational message, embraced by villages such as Godawaya. Dhammika was once a fisherman in the village. Following the tsunami, he trained at a nearby fishery institute to learn fibreglass moulding and boat engine repairs. Now he's both a fisherman and a mechanic and he receives daily help from his community. Read his amazing story.

Crafting a future 

When we arrived in Wanduruppa, a small village, in Ambalantota during 2006, we found a group of inspirational women eager to develop their handicraft business. With our help, these women were able to embark on a journey that has taught them new business skills and seen the opening of a handicraft sales centre. Follow this incredible account of the Wanduruppa craftswomen.

As you read these stories, pause to remember the vast impact this tsunami had on so many lives. But also know that, five years on, we have made a real difference to the rebuilding process and we will continue to do so for as long as it takes. I thank you for all your help and support and I wish you a happy and healthy New Year.

With best wishes,



Margaret Gardner
Communications Director

P.S. Practical Action was appalled by the lack of progress by world leaders at the recent Copenhagen Summit. For our thoughts, check out our blog.

   

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Practical Action, The Schumacher Centre for Technology and Development, Bourton on Dunsmore, Rugby, Warwickshire, CV23 9QZ, UK | Practical Action is a registered charity and company limited by guarantee. Reg Charity No 247257 | www.practicalaction.org.uk

 

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