COVID-19 and Compassion’s Work in Sri Lanka

An in-depth look at the coronavirus pandemic in Sri Lanka.

Last Updated: 7/27/2021

Sri Lanka is reporting an average of 1,400 new cases of COVID-19 per day as of July 18, which is about half of June’s average. Sri Lanka has fully vaccinated about 17% of its population of 22 million people, up from just 5% in June. As of July 10, Sri Lanka has loosened some COVID restrictions, allowing restaurants, places of worship and other nonessential public spaces to reopen with restrictions. Many Sri Lankans continue to struggle economically because of two months of strict lockdown. With schools closed, children of these vulnerable populations may also be further endangered by their lack of access to education for future opportunities.

Because of continued outbreaks and lockdowns through the country, many centers in Sri Lanka are limited to distance-only options in which child development center staff continue to check on families through phone calls and home visits. Some centers have been able to meet in small groups to do Bible studies. Partners have distributed almost 72,000 food packs and nearly 182,000 hygiene kits and have provided medical support to over 2,700 individuals.

Compassion's response to COVID-19 in Sri Lanka

A Message From National Staff

How Is Compassion Currently Operating in Sri Lanka?

Below, you will find the latest information on how Compassion is currently operating in Sri Lanka, including status updates on center openings, letter delivery and gift delivery. This is the most current information we have, though it can change quickly. Please know that all children and their families are being checked in on regularly by staff, either in person or by phone, even if the Compassion center is not open for programming.

Are Compassion Centers Open?

Many centers in Sri Lanka have moved to distance only because of continued spread of COVID-19. Staff members continue to make phone calls to check on families. Some have been able to begin meeting in small groups to do Bible studies and lessons. They also continue to monitor urgent needs and child protection issues. Because of the generous support of sponsors and donors, they have been able to distribute almost 72,000 food packs and nearly 182,000 hygiene kits to children and their families!

A boy playing in a water bucket

child reading IconStory From the Field

For families like 11-year-old Faumida’s, making sure there is enough food to eat is always a challenge. Faumida’s father works very hard as a day laborer, but sometimes there isn’t work for him. On those days, Faumida’s parents go without food so she and her brother have something to eat. To add to their difficulties, Faumida’s mother prepares meals outside where the weather can be very unpredictable, and winds make it a challenge to maintain a proper fire.

When the pandemic hit, Faumida’s father could no longer find work, which meant they had no money to buy food. Thankfully, Compassion was able to help. Not only did they provide three meals a day through food packages containing items like rice, noodles and chickpeas for Faumida’s family but they helped her mother build a shelter over the firewood where she cooks to protect the space from the weather.

“Because of what we received, we were saved from hunger,” says Faumida’s mother, Fausiya.

How can I pray for Sri Lanka?

Pray against frustration and disappointment as many Compassion centers have had to shift to distance-only ministry to protect children and their families. For more prayer resources, visit Compassion’s COVID-19 prayer page for prayer guides and a virtual prayer wall.

How Can I Help?

Sponsor a Child in Sri Lanka
Give to Compassion's Critical Program Needs Fund
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