John Keells Group provides immediate relief and resettlement support to persons affected by floods.

In response to the severe flooding brought on by monsoonal rains in southwestern parts of Sri Lanka, John Keells Foundation the CSR entity of the John Keells Group, provided funding and coordination support together with Group businesses who also mobilized their staff and other resources towards the provision of immediate relief to affected communities.

Group company Tea Smallholder Factories PLC (TSF) assisted affected communities in proximity to their factories through the distribution of dry rations and cooked food among affected persons in Neluwa, Hingalgoda, Karawita, Kurupanawa and Halwitigala while displaced staff in Kurupanawa were provided temporary shelter at the factory premises. TSF have also assisted community members in resettlement via cleaning of 15 houses and 175 wells in Kurupanawa, Hingalgoda, and Karawita. In total, TSF have supported over 1,500 persons.

JayKay Marketing Services which operates the Group’s supermarket chain, supplied dry rations, medicines, bedsheets, pillows and sleeping mats over Rs. 1 million to an estimated 1,000 persons affected in Ratnapura, whilst collection points were set up at each Keells Super outlet for the public to donate dry rations and sanitary items with contributions being matched on a ‘1 to 1’ basis. Through these collections, Keells Super has collected over 300 dry ration packs from customers, valued at approximately Rs 1 million and have matched these contributions with an additional Rs. 1 million worth of dry rations. An estimated 600 families from Atthudawa West and Atthudawa East in Matara District were provided dry ration packs.

Ceylon Cold Stores responded to immediate needs of persons in Hambantota and Matara by distributing over 9,000 water bottles to affected persons, whilst lunch packets were given to persons affected in Ranala, Batewala. Meanwhile, Cinnamon Hotels and Resorts donated linen including bed sheets, pillows and towels, totaling over 4,400 items to affected persons in Kalutara, Kurupanawa, Hingalgoda and Nagoda. Cinnamon Lodge also supported affected persons in Ehaliyagoda through a monetary contribution for each household and 2,000 bottles of drinking water and linen to 100 families that were displaced during the floods.

Union Assurance encouraged its branch staff islandwide to volunteer for relief efforts, by providing them two days’ paid leave while the staff too donated dry rations to affected persons in Matara.

Towards supporting the resettlement of displaced persons, John Keells Foundation has undertaken a well cleaning initiative in Galle and Kalutara Districts in collaboration with Sri Lanka Red Cross Society (SLRCS) and Group businesses in the affected areas. Since the initiation of the well cleaning programme on 02nd June, 780 wells have been cleaned in Galle and Kalutara Districts as at 14th June, benefitting a total of 7,479 persons. The initiative is ongoing. JKF is also working with SLRCS towards facilitating the provision of school requirements including books, stationery items and school bags for flood-affected school children. John Keells Foundation will continue to assess the needs of affected persons and provide necessary relief, especially targeting the resettlement of persons. Disaster Relief, one of the Foundation’s six CSR pillars, aims at supporting persons and communities affected by disasters towards enabling them rebuild their lives and livelihoods.

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