Murugan’s grace flows as water from Washington DC to Vanni, Sri Lanka‏

During my travels through Sri Lanka last year, I recognized a water problem in resettlement villages in the Mullaitivu District. Because this region was greatly damaged during the war, people build temporary shelters and living quarters. Among these resettlers, there are ten families living in the far end of this large village where there are no water facilities. They must walk long distances to obtain water for their daily use. Last year we built a tube well for these ten families.
Since then we have bean receiving requests for tube wells from many villages. In some areas there are up to twenty five families living without water facilities, facing the hardship.
At the end of last year a devotee of Washington Murugan Temple, who is aware of the Vanni water problem, contacted me and told me that a group of Washington temple devotees was interested in helping the Vanni water project. They conducted a fundraising and contributed the funds to Manitha Neyam Trust for the water project.
We are happy to let you know that in the past three months through the Manitha Neyam Water Project we have competed six tube wells and two conventional wells in the Vanni region.108
Water in these villages existed, but reaching it would require drilling over 100 feet. We accepted the challenge and brought machines from miles away to begin drilling the wells. Thankfully, we reached water at a depth of 120 feet. Next, we constructed a handpump for these six tube wells, as well as two conventional wells. Now these villagers are relieved they no longer have to walk long distances for water.
It is an awesome experience to witness the completion of each well. The villagers all gather and perform the Puja to the new well,  and they do the  Pongal and enjoy the Prasadam together–young and old thanking us for building the well for them. It is a humbling experience.
My sincere thanks go to the devotees of the Washington Murugan Temple and their friends for their generosity. Also, thanks to Manitha Neyam Trust and its Jaffna coordinator, Mr. Jeyasingamm, and our local coordinator, Mr. Sutharsan, and everyone who helped us accomplish this worthy project. Herewith, I am enclosing for your enjoyment some photos of the new wells.
In Peace,
Rishi Thondunathan105

Child of the Month- V Brundha

Meet V Brundha, a bright-eyed and intelligent 19 year old at Ratmalanai Hindu College who is currently doing her A levels.V Brundha

Her Story– Originally from Kalutara, a large town south of Colombo, she has been at Ratmalanai for the past 8 years. Brundha only has a mother and 4 sisters. Her older sister already graduated and another sister is at Ratmalanai with her.

Her Life Goals-Brundha has always been a focused individual say others at Ratmalanai; in fact, she came in the top of her class. In the future, she aspires to do electrical engineering and she hopes to find a job in a company. Other than her career, she hopes to bring awareness to the Tamil Hindu tradition, inspired by seeing loss of faith by Tamil Hindus.

Brundha has a bright future ahead of her thanks to generous individuals across the globe, like you, who have constantly supported her and others like her.

For more info on donating, please visit

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Manitha Neyam Trust USA Fundraiser

On October 11th of 2014, a wonderful night of music and the arts took place in the auditorium at Keefe Technical School in Massachusetts. Manitha Neyam Trust put on a show with a very talented music group named AAROH, who took the audience back in time to the vibrant music of Ilayaraja and more. The audience cheered and smiled as the band brought back favorites from the 50s and 60s through the 90s.

The AAROH group in action

The AAROH group in action


The beautiful jewelry being sold outside

While the concert was on a roll, outside there were tables stationed with handmade crafts, jewelry and information. Volunteers came from near and far to help organize and set up the event, and the event could not have been pulled off without them. It was truly a blessed night.

By the end of the night, Manitha Neyam Trust had raised over $10,000 thanks to the audience, the volunteers and most importantly the wonderful AAROH group. We hope to hold more successful events like these in the future!

Empowering the young ladies to help themselves and others


Three decades of war left many families devastated in the north and east of Sri Lanka. Many families lost their head of the household. As they soon found it difficult to provide for the needs of the home, many mothers and even young girls became the breadwinners of the family. When its members are faced with such challenge, some communities consider it their duty or responsibility to help people rebuild their lives and restore their independence and self-sufficiency. One way to empower people is  through livelihood assistance and vocational training programs.

In one such effort, Manitha Neyam Trust along with the Institute of Medical Science developed a Healthcare Assistant (Nurse Aid) training program at the Manipay Green Memorial Hospital. Thirty girls from the North and East of Sri Lanka enrolled in this one year training program.

As part of their program, the students spent time working with the residents of our Siva Poomi Elderly Home. Early this year, when I was in Sri Lanka, I was able witness the love and care the students provide to our Elders at the home. I took the opportunity to provide encouragement to these students for the noble work they are undertaking.


Today, I am happy to inform you that all 30 students who participated in the program completed the course, and all of them obtained employment in the Healthcare industry in the North and East of Sri Lanka. After such a successful first program, a second batch of students has been admitted and begun the Healthcare Assistant training program.


We congratulate Manitha Neyam Trust and its UK branch who fully sponsored the training program, and Dr. Surendra Kumar and the Institute of Medical Science for training these students. Herewith, I am enclosing few photos of the students working with the elderly at our home, and a group photo of the students.

On a Sad note: Attached below is a picture of Mrs. Rajeswari Ramalingam being helped to walk by one of the students. At age 103, Mrs. Ramalingam was the oldest resident at our Elderly Home. Unfortunately, she passed away last Monday at the Siva Poomi Home. She was a joyous person and an inspiration to many;  we will miss this wonderful soul.

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In Peace,
Rishi Thondunathan