More than 600 schools were affected countrywide. Rebuilding or repairing them has taken years of work through the coordination of a number of governmental agencies as well as non-governmental organizations such as AmeriCares. Realizing that this coordination would cross political boundaries, a Sri Lankan agency called TERM (Tsunami Rehabilitation Monitor) is overseeing the rehabilitation projects. AmeriCares has committed to rebuild 13 schools in the Batticaloa region: a formidable task, as these structures will eventually serve more than 7,000 students and 314 teachers.

“Our vision is to convert adversity into triumph by giving the tsunami-affected children, as well as future generations, an educational system that is far superior to what existed before the disaster,” says Sivaji de Zoysa, managing director of TERM. “AmeriCares support of this project will greatly benefit thousands of children by providing them with quality schools in which to learn.”

This program is just one example of the many pressing issues of the recovery effort that AmeriCares personnel in Indonesia and Sri Lanka are working to address. In addition to rebuilding the educational infrastructure in Sri Lanka, AmeriCares is focusing on health care and water supply needs in both countries, as well as economic recovery.