When a seed is planted it sprouts into a plant and slowly spreads its branches growing into a tree. It shelters all animals, birds and humans regardless of the species. As part of their process of healing, the survivor group of the Human Rights Office decided to go beyond themselves to reach out to the war-torn areas in the North.
The suggestion was presented at the Human Rights Workshop in September 2012 at Galaha Retreat House. The priests of the Mannar diocese gave a hearing, took up the challenge and cooperated fully. Thereby 15 Youth of Mannar and Vauvniya were sent to Lewella Fatima Retreat House Kandy to be trained as “Befrienders”.
The workshop on “Befrienders” was conducted by a psychological counselor and a therapist from Mannar. The expertise she had gathered in the midst of the war, working with the war survivors is invaluable and this fact greatly enriched the workshop.
The participants were open in their sharing and were bold enough to go through a process of inner healing. Saying “Good Bye” to the unfinished business was a very emotional experience where the participants grieved over their losses. A sense of relief and a general tone of joy prevailed as they achieved the much desired closure.