The Sri Sathya Sai Karuna Nilayam, based in Batticaloa, is located on the east side of the island 320 Kms from the capital city of Colombo, an area that was devastated by the 30-yearlong Sri Lankan civil war. It was also struck by a number of natural disasters including the major Tsunami of 2004 which saw many families lose their homes, their land and their livelihood. Additionally, the war left more than 30,000 war widows behind. Due to all of this and the resulting poverty in the area, medical and social services have been virtually non-existent. Thus the Sri Sathya Sai Karuna Nilayam Foundation was formed to serve the poor and underprivileged people of this area and the country.
In July of 2017, the first phase of the medical mission in Batticaloa, Sri Lanka, was inaugurated. It is named the Sri Sathya Sai Karuna Nilayam Medical Centre, the “Home of Compassion” built on a 56-acre property. Phase one was the launch of the outpatient services.
Since 2017 over 20,000 patients from 27 villages and 3 districts have been seen at the Sri Sathya Sai Karuna Nilayam Outpatient Clinic. All treatment and medicine are completely free of cost. Since January 14th, 2020 a nutritious hot meal is provided to all our patients and also to the elderly and children every day in the local villages. In 2022, over 25,000 meals were distributed.
SUPER SPECIALITY HOSPITAL
The second phase, the Sri Sathya Sai Sanjeevani Super Specialty Hospital, is a 75-Bed super specialty hospital featuring state-of-the-art operating theaters and a number of departments including Dental, Nutrition, Ophthalmology, Pediatrics, Gynecology and Gastroenterology. One floor of the hospital will be a surgical ward for infants and children suffering from Congenital Heart Disease (CHD).
The medical centre was sending children needing surgery for existing congenital heart disease conditions to the Sanjeevani system of hospitals in India. This life-saving process was being done in collaboration with the Rotary Club and in collaboration with several corporates in Sri Lanka through their social responsibility programs.
Since the opening of the hospital, teams of surgeons and their staff from across the globe have performed many pediatric cardiac consultations and successful heart operations on children from disadvantaged backgrounds. This hospital will serve as a beacon of hope for desperate mothers and fathers with sick children whose economic status removes private hospitals as an option, forcing them to settle for waiting lists at government hospitals for surgery.
A new feeding program was initiated in January 2020 to provide nutritious meals for the patients between 10am-2pm during clinic days. As the pandemic put strict restrictions in place, plans were made to bring the hot meals to the doorsteps of the villagers instead. Since May 2020 till February 2021 over 11,000 meals have been lovingly prepared at the Centre by the OPD staff and distributed to all the villagers.
In addition, since September 2015, students of the Dharmapuram School in Batticaloa have been receiving a banana and a glass of milk as nutritional supplement daily, with over 42,000 servings to date. During the years, the foundation has donated playground equipment, stationery, backpacks, shoes and socks to the students as well.
In March 2020, the Foundation commenced the Women’s Skills training program which aims to teach unprivileged women life skills such as sewing, baking etc to enhance their income potential.