At the presentation of the donation are (from left): SLBPA representatives Athula Jayakody (Treasurer), Haputhanthri Premasiri (Former President), Vijitha Yapa (President), Cardinal Ranjith, Samantha Indeewara (Secretary SLBPA) and Upali Wanigasuriya (former Secretary)
A delegation of the Sri Lanka Book Publishers’ Association (SLBPA) met Archbishop of Colombo Malcolm Cardinal Ranjith last week and handed over a donation of Rs. 450,000 for assistance to poor students affected by the bomb blasts in the three churches on 21 April. The Association also offered six scholarships with a monthly stipend to six students till they graduate from university.
Sri Lanka Book Publishers’ Association President Vijitha Yapa said: “The action taken by Your Eminence to harness the help of others to bring healing and calm and to ensure that peace endures is something that we as citizens are deeply touched by. The leadership you displayed has been a tremendous inspiration to us all and an example of how to keep a cool head amidst destruction and chaos and find answers instead of blaming others.”
The Cardinal thanked the SLBPA for the Association’s thoughtfulness in donating the funds and said there are over 170 children who have been affected by the bomb blasts. He said the greatest need of Sri Lanka is patriots who think of the country before themselves. He deplored the action of some destructive elements who he described as ‘cardboard heroes’ who are more interested in the votes they can entice than thinking of the destruction and disruption they are causing, tarnishing Sri Lanka’s image.