My name is Mrs. Pusparaj Sepamalai (age 45) from Vannakulam. I am living happily with my three children (2 daughters and 1 son). Three of them are going to school. My elder daughter joined to Jaffna University but she could not continue her studies there because she had completed her basic education in India. Again she has gone to India for her highest studies in a university. Other two children are going to schools in Mannar. I am a separated family head as my husband left me when my children were kids. I am living with my relations house after coming from India. Government has provided housing scheme and financial support as samurthi for the family.
Due the ethnic conflict my family left the country in 2002 to India over the sea and lived there for 15 years. In the beginning, we my husband and I went for daily wage in a multi-shop and earn sufficient enough money to look after our family and to educate our children. When my husband left my family, I was thrown alone to bear the burdens. As I could not manage my family expenses and expectations alone without my husband, I decided to come to Sri Lanka where I had relations.
After coming to Sri Lanka, with the support of village people, I got the contact of Caritas-Valvuthayam. In the first visit to Caritas office, I prioritized the need for my 1st daughters’ education and the organization granted financial support to continue my daughter’s university education in India. In the process of Indian returnee assistance, my family was included under this project for livelihood assistance and field staff together with SEDEC officers visited my family. With the confirmation of my eligibility for livelihood assistance, I was asked to participate in all preparatory training programme. By participating in those training, I could decide my business plan with the facilitation of resource persons and project staff. Finally, I realized that poultry rearing would be an idea livelihood activity for me as a women headed family. I within the allocation of Rs.50, 000 package managed to purchase hens, feedings, vessels and cage.
I assure that I will get sufficient income after three months. Therefore, I am grateful to Caritas Valvuthayam and the income generated from this livelihood activity would be sole used for the education of my children. It is a clear indicator that I will not raise my hands to others for any financial assistance for the education of my children. It is definitely a sustainable assistance for my family to be economically independent, socially recognized/respected and leading a dignified life in the village like other people.