“Make places you make your dream come true”
The MLL, with the motto, addresses many varieties of social problems that influence people’s lives in Sri Lanka.
Our motto constitutes a principle of MLL that we act with respecting people, their lives, and traditions in Sri Lanka. Our activity is supported by the motivation of the people. It can never be well-functioned only by the MLL’s motivation. To create a peaceful society, we make a firm partnership with people in Sri Lanka and conduct the MLL activities together.
The MLL was established by me (Ryo Uchida) and my friends of the same spirits for achieving the Sri Lankan peace.
Sri Lanka is the island with a very beautiful nature in the Indian Ocean. Every year many international tourists visit the fascinating island. However, until 2009, the country had experienced the protracted civil war between the government of Sri Lanka and the anti-government armed groups for around 30 years. Sri Lanka is a very small country but has many varieties of identities based on ethnicity and religion. People in the country coexisted peacefully, but the protracted war could make the differences among the identity groups clearer and draw a clear boundary among them.
I, one of the founders of the MLL, studied abroad, from 2017 to 2018, at the University of Colombo in Sri Lanka to conduct Peace and Conflict Research in the country. The purpose of the study abroad was to know about the real situation of how people in conflict-affected areas experienced during the Sri Lankan civil war, and then how they live in the post-conflict period. While enlisting the kindest help from the government of Sri Lanka, I visited Vavuniya District in the Northern Province and stayed in the Vavuniya town for over half a year. Still, the scars of the war left all over the places in Vavuniya, which was the center of the civil war. I visited some villages and collected narratives of the war from the war victims as well as the ex-soldiers. I saw the difficult reality in the places.
While taking a visit to some villages, I recognized several important points. On the one hand, there were many houses in which no one lives. I asked the village-level government officer who took me to show his villages. He answered as follows: “there is no developed industry and no place for people living around here to work. So, people who live around here tend to go for work in larger cities, such as Anuradhapura and Jaffna.
On the other hand, when visiting other villages, I recognized that there were some young people in their homes even in the day time. They explained their present situation as follows: “the war deprived us of our education opportunity. We do not have enough skills to work. After the war, the government and international organizations supported our lives. However, now, almost 10 years passed, so they withdrew their projects from here. Usually, we do work as day laborers, but do not have enough work to live.”
This experience gave me an important keyword in supporting local people. That is “sustainability.” To build sustainable peace, we need to provide short-term and long-term projects: Promoting the regional industry and creating stable working opportunities are urgent for local people. Certainly, Vavuniya was underdeveloped because of the center of the civil war as well as the hard climate of the dry zone, and the international support to the areas was also stopped.
From those experiences, I realized that it is necessary to create a foundation that can gather people who have the same spirit for peace and build a sustainable network with international and domestic partners. Therfore, I established the non-profit organization, Mother Land Lanka, named after our hope that Sri Lanka becomes a peaceful motherland for everyone who is born and lives in the country. Our MLL was registered as NPO in Sri Lanka in 2020, and act for Sri Lankan sustainable peace.
Neil De Alwis
Former Ministry's Secretary
Ministry of Home Affairs
Treasurer , Financial Manager
Treasure of Brightmoon foundation
Owner of Kobe Lanka Pre-school
The manger of Top company Ltd in Japan
Srilankan coordinator of Asian child support of Okinawa Japan
International Economic Development Program
LLB Sri Lanka, LLM UK Attorney -at-law, Supreme Court of Sri Lanka, Notary Public,
Registered Company Secretary and Commissioner of Oaths
Mother Land Lanka
20/8 PANDIWATTE ROAD, NATTARANPOTHA, KANDY, SRI LANKA