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25 November 2017: Hela SaranaHela Sarana logo

This evening my wife and I went to the AGM of Hela Sarana as guests of a married couple who are members. Hela Sarana is a UK charity which was founded 21 years ago to support the needy in Sri Lanka. Most of its members are expatriate Sinhalese. The Sri Lankan High Commissioner attended the event.

The Secretary started by the AGM by reading the minutes of the previous AGM. Well, actually it was more of a presentation highlighting the previous reports on some of the projects with which Hela Sarana is involved. The “minutes” were then formally approved.

The AGM was adjourned while we all had dinner. This was a curry buffet. It was the first time I had ever had tuna curry. There was enough for second helpings for all who wanted one but my wife and I opted to go straight to the Sri Lankan dessert.

The AGM was resumed after the dinner. The Sri Lankan High Commissioner said a few words and then left for another engagement. There were then two presentations, one about the support for schools in the poorer parts of Sri Lanka and the other on the fight against CKDu or Chronic Kidney Disease of unknown causes. This occurs in various areas of the world and is a particular problem in some parts of Sri Lanka’s “Dry Zone”.

A new committee was elected and the AGM then formally closed.

A raffle followed. We took bought tickets but didn”t win anything.

Entertainment was provided by members of the Sinhalese community. A young man played jazz on a violin. A girl of about seven sang. A woman and a man also sang solos. My wife and I didn’t understand any of the songs as they were all in Sinhala but we both found them very enjoyable.

There was then dancing until midnight but we opted to leave before that started.