I am Desmond De Silva's wife, Phyllis. Since he passed, it's been a challenging and difficult time, but I am healing with the wonderful support of family and friends. I am also ensuring Des's life is celebrated in the ways he would have wanted. I am raising funds to continue the Tea Leaf Trust's great work and establish a legacy for Des. Everyone who donates will have their name on Des's legacy wall.
The hill country is under resourced and lags behind the rest of the country in terms of educational and vocational training opportunities for young people. The area also sees high levels of alcoholism, domestic violence and suicide - but young people are asking for a different future. They want to learn English and I.T. to succeed and lift their families out of poverty. 77% of young people in Sri Lanka don't have a friend outside of their ethnic group.
Desmond brought so much joy through his music and has touched many lives. I have had hundreds of text messages and emails sharing with me how he has touched lives either through his music or simply by encouraging a fan to follow their dream. This campaign is to honour his memory and continue sharing his warmth and kindness. Every donor will be recognised through social media and newsletter, and, a legacy wall will be created - please see the photo and the different amounts.
Tea Leaf Trust is a UK registered and Sri Lankan registered NGO and winner of the UK Charity Award for International Development in 2022. They have been working in the hill country, with all ethnicities since 2010 with incredible results. 82% of their graduates move into full-time employment or further education within 12 months and those employed double their household incomes. The young people serve their communities and run classes for the children so that they also learn English.