Approximately 500 students benefit from Dilmah’s Dhiriya Centre and most students who complete training programmes at
the centre find gainful employment or become self-employed. Anoma and Chandani are two hardworking individuals who have
established their own successful sewing venture.
Located on a quiet corner of the sprawling MJF Centre in Moratuwa, our first Butterfly Garden plays host to nearly 50 varieties of butterfly
including several endemic species. The Garden has been designed to provide a safe haven for these species, who are threatened by the loss of
habitat and host plants.
With the ever present worries on the global food crisis and skyrocketing food prices, the need to be self-sufficient has reached critical
proportions. Dilmah Conservation, identifying the need for addressing food security through sustainable agriculture, has commenced a
successful vertical gardening system.
The Dilmah Conservation Sustainable Agriculture Research Centre was established at the MJF Centre in Moratuwa as a research cum
education centre to carry out studies on high yielding crops, organic vegetation, home gardening and sustainable agricultural practices.
Situated in Sri Lanka’s impoverished Monaragala District, MJF Charitable Foundation’s Dhiriya (strength) Centre provides support classes
in Mathematics, English and Science for underprivileged students and vocational training for youth from disadvantaged backgrounds.
“Most of our students attending support classes at the Dhiriya Centre can’t afford to pay for tuition. So, this is a blessing to our kids.
We are all so grateful to the MJF Charitable Foundation for supporting the educational endeavours of these children.”
Manori Apsara - Administrator and Former Student of the Dhiriya Centre
The Foundation’s Child Development Centres offer children under the age of five at Dilmah tea estates a chance to be cared for in a healthy
environment with facilities that enable holistic development, ensuring that every child is given a chance to grow mentally and physically.
The MJF Charitable Foundation ensures that every child attending its Child Development Centres receive at least one balanced mid-day meal
daily. The safety and health levels of the children have also significantly improved with the supervision of trained staff employed by the Foundation.
Supporting community wellbeing begins with efforts in our tea gardens. Ensuring that community members maintain decent health
standards is an important part of the work carried out by the MJF Charitable Foundation.
In improving the standard of health care, the Foundation has implemented a programme of continuous development at these health centres.
This covers basic medical facilities such as ante-natal and post-natal maternal care, immunisation, health education, eye care and oral health.
Education is an area that is of particular concern to the Founder and because plantation workers have been deprived of accessing higher
education and lack resources and opportunities, the Foundation set up a scholarship scheme and improved facilities in plantation schools.
Through Dilmah’s Small Entrepreneur Programme, Geethani, breadwinner and mother of three, was able to sustain a business of making
and selling sweetmeats and bites. Today, she is able to look after her family and provide for her children’s education.
Former rebel-combatant Kalawathi lost her right leg during the conflict that prevailed and is now an artificial limb user.
The Small Entrepreneur Programme offered her livelihood assistance in the form of livestock so that she will be able to
enhance her income and look after her mother and children.
Knowledge Chest, an MJF Charitable Foundation initiative aimed at empowering the differently-abled, digitizes printed books into an audio
format, offering a convenient and accessible means of education and entertainment for those visually impaired.
“Throughout my life I was impelled by a brightly flaming dream—that I would one-day be the owner of an enormously vast library of books.
And today, I am the most fortunate man in the world, because my dream has come true.”
Nishantha Mendis - Treasurer of the Blind Federation
“The wellbeing of children is an important part of Dilmah’s work”
Merrill J. Fernando, Settlorof the Merrill J. Fernando Charitable Foundation.
The MJF Kids Programme supports over 750 children island wide with education and leadership training since 2006.
Nurturing children on Dilmah plantations is a family effort for Merrill and his sons. With preschool students of the Somerset Estate Child
Development Centre where children under the age of 5 receive daily care and nutrition.
Working for the welfare of children is deeply rooted within Dilmah’s work ethics.
Dilhan, younger son of the Dilmah Founder with children at one of the plantation Child Development Centres.
Providing preschool facilities for young children in the plantation sector is part of Dilmah’s commitment.
to making business a matter of human service!
Malik, older son of the Dilmah Founder with children at one of the plantation Child Development Centres.
The MJF Charitable Foundation’s Rainbow Centre cares for children diagnosed with Autism and Down Syndrome in order to give them a
chance at a better life. Its programmes include singing and dancing lessons, cookery lessons, painting, sewing and sign language classes.
The MJF Kids initiative provides children with education, life-skills training and a general exposure to progressive alternatives outside their
own limited life-experiences, so that they will be equipped to step beyond their existing environs and establish a better quality of life for
themselves and their families.
MJF Kids are part of daily sewing classes at the MJF Centre in Moratuwa. On any given day, several MJF Kids are busy creating beautiful
designs with coloured thread and ribbons on pillow cases and cushion covers, putting together wall hangings or just learning basic stitches.
MJF Kids of various ages attend art and craft classes at the MJF Centre in Moratuwa where they paint to their hearts content and enjoy
themselves immensely. Art and craft classes are used as a medium to help these children express their aspirations and their fears.
The Foundation is working with Cerebral Palsy Lanka Foundation to provide much needed care and education for children with Cerebral Palsy.
This programme offers children with therapeutic, simulative and sensory integration mechanisms managed by specialised and trained staff
All children who are fans of cricket dream of becoming professional players one day. Dilmah strives to make these dreams a reality,
giving children a chance at becoming stars of the game, by offering them proper training, facilities and encouragement.
Women attending the Foundations Women’s Development Programme benefits from threadwork and ribbon embroidery classes.
In the future, women who show potential will be supported via the MJF Charitable Foundation’s Small Entrepreneur Programme
to enhance their chosen livelihood.
Our Women’s Development Programme at the MJF Centre in Moratuwa trains disadvantaged women in sewing, cooking and gardening not
only as a skill development but also as an activity that allows them to escape the trials of their day to day lives.
The MJF Charitable Foundation’s Prison Reform and Integrate Programme helped Rupa, a mother and wife, transform herself after being
released from the correctional system. Today, she leads a productive life and is a respected seamstress in Kuruvita.
Empowering women marginalised as a result of the now-concluded war in Sri Lanka’s North and East is a primary initiative of
the Foundation’s Small Entrepreneur Programme. Sahundala, a war widow, was provided with fishing nets to sustain a viable
income with the help of her brother Rajan.
Kanapathy Yogarasa was a child rebel-combatant and surrendered to the state in 2009. He is an amputee and is currently engaged
in dairy farming. The Foundation’s Small Entrepreneur Programme provided him with cattle in hopes of dignifiedly empowering
Yogarasa through a sustainable livelihood.