About OfERR
 
Appeal for Notebook distribution for refugees
Educating the next generation has always been one of the key concerns of Organisation for Eelam Refugee Rehabilitation.
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(April 12, Colombo, Sri Lanka Guardian) The stage is set for the elimination of the LTTE in Sri Lanka. The likely decimation of the LTTE and concerns for the civilians held hostage by it in the 17 square kilometer war zone (supposed to have been the safe zone!) have become emotive issues for the Tamil populations within Sri Lanka, the Diaspora and the world at large. The inability of the International Community to demand the LTTE let go the civilians it is holding hostage as part of its survival tactics, is shameful and demonstrates a refusal to articulate the truth, in the face of overwhelming evidence. Diplomacy does not dictate the international community should take the side of blatant evil and falsehood.
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Exhibition
 About OfERR

OfERR was founded in 1984 and is a non-profit, non-political charitable organization, run by Sri Lankan Tamil refugees for refugees. OfERR‘s main objective is to assist and render relief to Tamil refugees from Sri Lanka who, as a result of the armed conflict in their homeland, had taken refuge in India.

OfERR's ultimate goal is the realization of equal rights of all citizens, the rule of law, social justice and the restoration of democracy in the homeland and the achievement of sustainable development. OfERR’s mission is to improve and develop the life and well being of refugees in India and to prepare them for their eventual return to the Island. OfERR's key objective is to build the capacity of refugees, empowering them to make a significant contribution to their social and economic development and to rebuilding their homeland.

OfERR’s Interventions

In the initial stages of it’s functioning the humanitarian assistance centered on providing strength and encouragement through counseling and helping students to find schools and colleges to continue their disrupted studies. Trauma counseling was an important component of the Counseling program. Later, OfERR extended its services on the basis of needs arise among the refugees. The major interventions by OfERR are,

  • Advocacy for protection and care of Sri Lankan Tamil refugees in Tamil Nadu and for meaningful return
  • Community organization and building
  • Improvement of basic needs in the camps
  • Supplementing government assistance to the refugees in the camps
  • Youth and sports development
  • Women empowerment through formation and strengthening of young women and women SHG groups in the Camp, District and Regional level
  • Preventing diseases and improving the health status among refugees
  • Improving nutritional status of refugees
  • Providing education and skills training
  • Facilitating income generation activities
  • Enhancing capacity of OfERR volunteers and refugee leaders to lead their communities
  • Counseling and prevention of gender based violence
  • Assisting refugees with documentation work
  • Sensitizing refugees with the current situation in Sri Lanka to facilitate refugees for an informed, voluntary and considered decision on return

‘Refugees to the Rescue’

In December 2004 when the Tsunami devastated the coastal villages of South India, our refugee volunteers went to the rescue of the Indian population. OfERR’s Tsunami Relief and Rehabilitation win restored temporary shelters, built community centers, repaired roofs, provided solar lighting, smokeless Cholas, toilets and water tanks. OfERR also trained 120 Indian Tsunami victims as Counselors, health workers, women empowerment workers and teachers. OfERR’s volunteers carried out psycho-social work amongst 60,441 Tsunami victims.

Conclusion

OfERR is an organization of Sri Lankan Tamil refugees, by refugees for refugees, a unique concept that is our greatest strength. OfERR has trained several hundred Sri Lankan Tamil refugee volunteers as Counselors, Health workers, Women Empowerment workers and Teachers. Over the past 28 years, OfERR had developed highly capable teams that work in improvisation of basic needs, psycho social program, women empowerment program, education program, health, nutrition and medical program, advocacy and peace building, human resource development program, etc. Since the end of hostilities in May 2009, OfERR has been working on assisting refugees who wish to return to Sri Lanka voluntarily.