Tea Leaf's professional development centres will provide life-changing education programmes for some of the world's poorest children and young people on the tea estate communities in Sri Lanka. Our three centres will provide high quality English language teaching, alongside lessons in ethics, volunteering and emotional health. We will empower 350 students each year to affect social transformation, redressing the high rates of suicide, domestic violence and alcoholism within their communities.
The Indian Tamil tea picking communities often face incredible hardship, working from 8 to 10 hours a day in often searing heat, 6 days a week - all for less than $2 a day. Families live in line rooms, many sharing outdoor cold water taps and toilets. The ethnic divisions in Sri Lanka make it impossible for these tea-picking families to escape the poverty trap. As a result, many communities face complex social issues, including shocking rates of suicide, domestic violence and alcoholism.
Our teacher training programme will help 18 to 24-year-old young people achieve high level English speaking skills, and qualifications - the key to securing well paid employment in Sri Lanka. Our project affects social transformation, because alongside English lessons, our three centres will offer business skills, community volunteering projects and emotional and mental health support - ensuring that all students feel well equipped enough to support themselves and their families in the future .
The project will educate 350 students each year across three centres, allowing them to lift themselves and their families out of poverty. We will improve youth employability for all graduates by developing high standard English language skills and professional skills. All students will participate in our Community English Programme, teaching in primary schools for children, where standards of teaching are poor. We will also provide lessons in emotional and mental health to build resilience.