Big welcome by Lord Mayor Roth at town council on the occasion of our tenth anniversary

Foundation of Neuwied-Matara Friendship Association took place on September 21st, 2005. A few weeks after the tsunami, shaking the area around the Indian Ocean on December 26th, 2004, the Lord Mayor of Neuwied, Nikolaus Roth, together with Sagara Abegunewardene, Manfred Meier (Manager of Lohmann Company in Neuwied/Feldkirchen), some teachers, school principals and others founded an alliance called “Neuwied helps to help” which later became “Neuwied-Matara Friendship Association”. On that occasion the Lord Mayor invited foundation members, former and current board members, donors, friends and our patron, Princess Sophie Charlotte zu Wied in his office, town council of Neuwied.

He looked back at the past ten years, mentioned the first President, Mr. Hans-Dieter Deckert, and particularly Sagara Abegunewardene, who as a son of Sri Lanka and witness of the terrible disaster has always been the best source of trustworthy information and helped to start activities and work of our association. This support was initiated by the amount of 25.000 Euro, donated by Lohmann Company and his manager Mr. Manfred Meier. Focus was laid on Matara and support of school children which has always been continued and is still going on today. There were activities in schools, clubs, banks, companies… leading to generous donations, and many individual donors supported our work. Our association has spent so far about nearly half a million Euro (approx. 60.000.000,00 Rs) on building hostels, classrooms, providing teaching material and aid. And not to forget the scholarships that meanwhile are realized by individual sponsors. Lord Mayor Roth expressed his appreciation for the sustainable development and lasting influence of our association’s work. Although there are so many trouble spots in the world and particularly the difficult present situation of thousands and thousands of refugees coming to Germany, Mr. Roth encouraged the members to continue their support in  Sri Lanka and, thus, to help consolidating education, which might lead to better standards and chances for young people in Matara. We want to thank from the bottom of our heart all those who have accompanied us on our way during ten years by means of donations, practical help and good advice. There is much more to do and we ask our members, friends, donors…to go on supporting us. We invite those who might become interested in our work, to come and celebrate with us the tenth anniversary of our association, on Saturday 26th 2015 at the adult education center (VHS) in Neuwied (11 a.m. – 4 p. m.) It is our aim to show our visitors the beauty of Sri Lanka and the point and intention of our work.