Horizon Academy – Ralapanawa Opened on December 01, 2017

Horizon Academy – Ralapanawa Opened on December 01, 2017

Mr. Nanda Wanninayaka, the Founder of Horizon Lanka Foundation addressing the children and the parents in Ralapanawa, Nochchiyagama

Horizon Lanka Foundation started its fifth Horizon Academy branch, this time in Ralapanawa, Nochchiyagama on December 01, 2017. At Horizon Academy we teach 5 languages, i.e., English, Spanish, German, French and Japanese depending on the availability of foreign volunteers who speak those languages. We also teach ICT, IoT and Robotics as our main subjects. In addition to these subjects, we also teach Fine Arts and Sports to break the monotony of the students. We also pay our attention to personal development also.

Those who wish to join please call Ms. Nadeeka Kumarasingha (an intern) at nadeeka@horizonlanka.org or on 071-8705428 or Mr. Rohana Kumarasingha (Manager) at rohana@horizonlanka.org or 0713902542. The Address is Horizon Academy, Farm Junction, Ralapanawa, Nochchiyagama, Sri Lanka.

We charge only 500 LKR (3.25 USD) per month for all these subjects. We have both local and foreign teachers to teach these subjects at the Academy. Students will be rewarded with stationary, school supplies, computer related equipment, etc. after evaluating their performances.

The parents of the students will be given free English and ICT training on Sundays from 8.00 am to 12.00 noon.

So, please help us. You can either contact me through mobile phone on 0094 7777 02678 or 0094 7185 08537 or at nanda@horizonlanka.org or nanda.wanninayaka@gmail.com if you need our bank details. Or you can simply donate with your credit card through our crowdfunding campaign at https://www.generosity.com/education-fundraising/empowering-children-in-rural-sri-lanka.

We have two brand new laptop computers donated by Mr. Vidhura Ralapanawa of MAS Group, Sri Lanka. These are the only computer equipment we have. We need more equipment and services.

Nanda Wanninayaka, Founder, Horizon Lanka Foundation

Mr. Nanda Wanninayaka addressing the students and the parents
Mr. Nanda Wanninayaka addressing the students and the parents
Miss Sepalika Piyadasa introducing computers to the students.
Miss Sepalika Piyadasa introducing computers to the students.

98. Paula Pazos Dopazo – Spain

98. Paula Pazos Dopazo – Spain

Paula Pazos Dopazo from SpainMiss Paula Pazos Dopazo from Spain volunteered at Horizon Lanka Foundation in November, 2017.

Paula Pazos Dopazo from Spain with the students of Horizon Academy - Mahawilachchiya
Paula Pazos Dopazo from Spain with the students of Horizon Academy – Mahawilachchiya
Miss Paula Pazos Dopazo at Mahawilachchiya Reservoir, Mahawilachchiya.
Miss Paula Pazos Dopazo at Mahawilachchiya Reservoir, Mahawilachchiya.
Miss Paula Pazos Dopazo teaching the students of Horizon Academy - Mahawilachchiya
Miss Paula Pazos Dopazo teaching the students of Horizon Academy – Mahawilachchiya
A smiling Paula Pazos Dopazo at Horizon Academy - Mahawilachchiya
A smiling Paula Pazos Dopazo at Horizon Academy – Mahawilachchiya
Miss Paula Pazos Dopazo at the first host family
Miss Paula Pazos Dopazo at the first host family
Sanduni's parents' farm in Mahawilachchiya
Sanduni’s parents’ farm in Mahawilachchiya
Paula Pazos Dopazo with the students of Paniyankadawala Public School
Paula Pazos Dopazo with the students of Paniyankadawala Public School

 

Paula Pazos Dopazo with the students of Paniyankadawala Public School
Paula Pazos Dopazo with the students of Paniyankadawala Public School
Paula Pazos Dopazo with the students of Paniyankadawala Public School
Paula Pazos Dopazo with the students of Paniyankadawala Public School
Paula Pazos Dopazo with the students of Paniyankadawala Public School
Paula Pazos Dopazo with the students of Paniyankadawala Public School

 

 

93. Quentin Sylvestre-panthet – France

93. Quentin Sylvestre-panthet – France

93. Quentin Sylvestre-panthet from France

Mr. Quentin Sylvestre-panthet from France volunteered at Horizon Lanka Foundation from October to November, 2017.

Quentin Sylvestre-panthet with the students of Horizon Academy -, Anuradhapura city.
Quentin Sylvestre-panthet with the students of Horizon Academy -, Anuradhapura city.
Quentin Sylvestre-panthet with the students of Horizon Academy -, Anuradhapura city.
Quentin Sylvestre-panthet with the students of Horizon Academy -, Anuradhapura city.
Quentin Sylvestre-panthet with the students of Horizon Academy -, Anuradhapura city.
Quentin Sylvestre-panthet with the students of Horizon Academy -, Anuradhapura city.
Quentin Sylvestre-panthet with the students of Horizon Academy -, Anuradhapura city.
Quentin Sylvestre-panthet with the students of Horizon Academy -, Anuradhapura city.
Quentin Sylvestre-panthet with the students of Horizon Academy -, Anuradhapura city.
Quentin Sylvestre-panthet with the students of Horizon Academy -, Anuradhapura city.
Quentin Sylvestre-panthet from France
Quentin Sylvestre-panthet from France
Quentin Sylvestre-panthet from France
Quentin Sylvestre-panthet from France

92. Qurro Lopez – Spain

92. Qurro Lopez – Spain

Qurro Lopez – Spain

Mr. Qurro Lopez from Spain volunteered at Horizon Lanka Foundation in October, 2017. Mr. Lopez taught both English and Spanish to the children. Though there had been volunteers from Spain before, it was Mr. Lopez who started teaching the children Spanish first. The students, especially the younger students caught the language very fast. Mr. Lopez and his friends and his students in his yoga school in Spain collectively donated 90,000 LKR (585.70 USD) to be distributed among the students as scholarships money for their expenses in 2017. Prabodha Kalotuwawa got 20,000 LKR  (130 USD) while others will get the rest of the money depending on their achievements by December 31, 2017. Mr. Lopez also donated two used tabs to be used by two of the students, Pramodhya Gunarathna and Tharushika Rathnayaka of Horizon Academy – Mahawilachchiya.

Qurro Lopez teaching the students at Horizon Academy - Mahawilachchiya.
Qurro Lopez teaching the students at Horizon Academy – Mahawilachchiya.

Qurro Lopez at Horizon Academy - Mahawilachchiya
Qurro Lopez at Horizon Academy – Mahawilachchiya
Quro Lopez with the kids in Mahawilachchiya
Quro Lopez with the kids in Mahawilachchiya

Toys for junior students at Horizon Academy - Mahawilachchiya from Mr. Qurro Lopez.
Toys for junior students at Horizon Academy – Mahawilachchiya from Mr. Qurro Lopez.
Qurro Lopez donating a used tab to student Pramodhya Gunarathna
Qurro Lopez donating a used tab to student Pramodhya Gunarathna
Qurro Lopez donated a used tab to student Tharushika Rathnayaka
Qurro Lopez donated a used tab to student Tharushika Rathnayaka
A friend of Mr. Qurro Lopez donated 20,000 LKR (130 USD) for the student Prabodha Kalotuwawa.
A friend of Mr. Qurro Lopez donated 20,000 LKR (130 USD) for the student Prabodha Kalotuwawa.
Mr. Qurro Lopez and Mr. Nanda Wanninayaka enjoying dancing with us at the Farewell Party of Mr. Lopez.
Mr. Qurro Lopez and Mr. Nanda Wanninayaka enjoying dancing with us at the Farewell Party of Mr. Lopez.

Saying goodbye is never easy.
Saying goodbye is never easy.

Horizon Lanka Foundation Launches Horizon Academy – Ralapanawa on December 01, 2017

Horizon Lanka Foundation Launches Horizon Academy – Ralapanawa on December 01, 2017

Nadeeka Kumarasingha with a computer at Horizon Academy - Mahawilachchiya.

Horizon Lanka Foundation (HLF) starts its flagship academic institute, the fifth branch of Horizon Academy in Ralapanawa, Nochchiyagama, Anuradhapura on December 01, 2017. The HLF started its first Horizon Academy in Mahawilachchiya in August 01, 1998 (19 years ago) and the second on May 01, 2017 in Tantirimale (5 ½ months ago) and the third on September 01, 2017 in Anuradhapura City (1 ½ months ago) and the fourth in Ranpathvila on November 01, 2017 (15 days ago) and getting prepared to start its 5th branch in Ralapanawa, Nochchiyagama, Anuradhapura on December 01, 2017.

Even though there is a big school and a number of small schools in Nochchiyagama, students’ English and ICT knowledge are much to be desired. We were looking for a good location to start a Horizon Academy close to Nochchiyagama. Then I remembered that a former bright student of mine, Nadeeka Sajeewani is settled in Ralapanawa with her family. So, I sent a message to them to come and meet me. Nadeeka was one of the brightest and most dynamic students Horizon Lanka Foundation can boast of. She was a creative dancer, a terrific singer, an avid graphic and web designer, an aggressive sportswoman and an excellent presenter. So, I thought why not use her to start the new Horizon Academy in Nochchiyagama? So, I proposed my idea to Nadeeka and her husband Rohana  and they were over the moon to hear it. We can recruit Nadeeka to teach English (and ICT, dancing, etc.)

I visited their house which is being built but there is ample space in her house and the garden to start the Academy. So, we had an extensive discussion and then decided to start the Horizon Academy – Ralapanawa, Nochchiyagama, Anuradhapura on December 01, 2017.

We are happy to say that already a regular Horizon Lanka donor, Ms. Vayomi Wijeratne has donated 21,000 LKR (136.71 USD) for Nadeeka to enroll for a Certificate Course in English at Rajarata University of Sri Lanka. We are looking for another donor to provide a similar training to another girl or boy to do the same course but she/he would mostly teach ICT. We need all our staff members to communicate in English fluently. Nadeeka’s husband, Rohana can be recruited as the manager of the Academy and these three positions would be sufficient for the Horizon Academy – Ralapanawa for the first year.

We keep getting qualified foreign volunteers to teach English and other languages and ICT in our academies and a couple from the United Kingdom has agreed to volunteer at the academy at Ralapanawa in December. We will get many more and we won’t have teacher shortages. By working with foreign volunteer teachers, the local staff also will improve their English and ICT knowledge faster.

Like in all our other Horizon Academies, the students and the youth in Nochchiyagama area will be able to learn English, Spanish, French, German and Japanese at Ralapanawa. They will also learn ICT, Robotics and IoT. In addition, they will do sports such as American football, rugby, soccer, cricket, volleyball and martial arts. To produce a balance student, we have also added aesthetic subject areas such as dancing, music, painting, etc. to break the monotony.

So, come and join us at Horizon Academy – Ralapanawa. Ms. Georgina Williamson and Mr. Jess Williamson from the United Kingdom would be the first two foreign volunteer at the Academy.

So, we need your support for capital expenditure and recurrent costs at least for the first year. Our idea is to reach the breakeven stage within the first six months and then become sustainable within the first year. With the experiences of 19 years in the field of English and ICT supplementary education, I am sure we can achieve the goal we set up.

So, please help us. You an either contact me through mobile phone on 0094 7777 02678 or 0094 7185 08537 or nanda@horizonlanka.org or nanda.wanninayaka@gmail.com if you need our bank details. Or you can simply donate with your credit card through our crowdfunding campaign at https://www.generosity.com/education-fundraising/empowering-children-in-rural-sri-lanka. You can download our Annual Budget in Microsoft Excel here. HORIZON ACADEMY – RALAPANAWA – ANNUAL BUDGET You can sponsor any of the expenses in full or in portions. 

Please share this story with the students and the youth in the adjoining areas and tell them to join Horizon Academy at their earliest. The Academy starts officially on December 01, 2017 at 3.00 pm and the course fees for the first month (December) will be completely free and there will be a fee of 500 LKR per student from January for all the subjects mentioned above.

Contact Mr. Rohana Kumarasingha, the Manager of Horizon Academy – Ralapanawa at rohana@horizonlanka.org through email and on 071-3902542 on mobile or Ms. Nadeeka Kumarasingha, the English Teacher of the academy at nadeeka@horizonlanka.org and on 071-8705428.

So, see you at Horizon Academy – Ralapanawa on December 01, 2017 at 3.00 pm.

Nanda Wanninayaka, the Founder and the Chairman of Horizon Lanka Foundation

Nadeeka's house and the spacious garden. Horizon Academy will be held here.
Nadeeka’s house and the spacious garden. Horizon Academy will be held here.
Nadeeka Kumarasingha - aspiring to be an English teacher.
Nadeeka Kumarasingha – aspiring to be an English teacher.
Nadeeka and Rohana with the kids.
Nadeeka and Rohana with the kids.
With my former student Nadeeka Kumarasingha and her kids.
With my former student Nadeeka Kumarasingha and her kids.

Improving 3G Mobile Coverage at Horizon Academy – Mahawilachchiya by Dialog Axiata – Update 4

Improving 3G Mobile Coverage at Horizon Academy – Mahawilachchiya by Dialog Axiata – Update 4

Horizon Academy students using internet through Dialog 3G coverage

At Horizon Lanka, we use Dialog Axiata PLC‘s telecommunication solutions for voice, data and satellite TV. There was an issue with Dialog 3G coverage in Mahawilachchiya during last few weeks – maybe due to high demand for the data service – since many youths and teenagers use internet a lot now. Mr. Nuwan Samaranayake from Houston, Texas, the United States raised the issue with Mr. Supun Weerasinghe, the CEO of Dialog Axiata and the latter promptly took actions to solve the problem. They sent three technical teams to provide different solutions and the latest came last Saturday (November 11, 2017) as Dialog Axiata installed a CenRF WCDMA Pico Repeater and a enRF TriBand Yagi Antenna to strengthen the 3G coverage within the Horizon Academy building. Now we get strong 3G internet coverage inside the computer lab. It still fluctuates with going back to 2G once in a while but mostly there is good coverage within the building. We thank Dialog Axiata for installing this high-tech equipment to provide us better coverage.

Though we have stronger 3G signals within the computer lab, the rest of Mahawilachchiya still have the problem of fluctuating 3G signals between 3G and 2G. So, there are rumors that the Dialog’s high-tension tower erected at Kirial Petiyawa, Mahawilachchiya would be shifted to the center of Mahawilachchiya village so that everyone could use stronger 3G coverage. Kiral Petiyawa is situated at the edge of Mahawilachchiya and there are less people in that area as it is mostly a farming region.

Dialog Axiata PLC provided 3G coverage to the whole Mahawilachchiya village in 2009 on the request of Mr. Nanda Wanninayaka, the Founder of Horizon Lanka Foundation long before some bigger towns in Anuradhapura were provided the facility. Of late, some of the other mobile operators like Hutch and Mobitel also extended their 2G coverages into 3G but only small pockets of the village are covered with 3G access by them while Dialog Axiata uses two communication towers in Mahawilachchiya to provide a wider 3G coverage.

Dialog Axiata PLC has assisted Horizon Lanka Foundation over the years whenever we requested their assistance. Read more at http://www.horizonlanka.org/en/?s=Dialog+telekom&submit=Search

 

Dialog team installing CenRF TriBand Yagi Antenna at Horizon Academy - Mahawilachchiya
Dialog team installing CenRF TriBand Yagi Antenna at Horizon Academy – Mahawilachchiya
Dialog Axiata installing a CenRF WCDMA Pico Repeater at Horizon Academy - Mahawilachchiya.
Dialog Axiata installing a CenRF WCDMA Pico Repeater at Horizon Academy – Mahawilachchiya.

Room to Read Donates English Supplementary Reading Books to Horizon Lanka Foundation

Room to Read Donates English Supplementary Reading Books to Horizon Lanka Foundation

Kids reading books received from Room to Read, Sri Lanka.

Horizon Lanka Foundation received 261 English supplementary reading books from Room to Read, a non-profit organization for helping girls’ education and children’s literacy, on November 02, 2017.

The children read the books with great enthusiasm as the books are very attractive, colorful and easy to use. Obviously, the children are from rural areas and their English knowledge is not much advanced. So, they try to read and understand the books through beautiful pictures.

The Horizon Lanka Foundation has launched a project to measure and to upgrade children’s reading ability and to motivate their eagerness towards reading with understanding with the belief they would learn English faster and will be more open to the world. We are sure they are on the right path.

The books are in different levels; children can learn from lower levels to higher level of English. The books are designed in a very methodical way.

The books will b shared with Horizon Academies in Mahawilachchiya, Tantirimale and Anuradhapura City. We also need books for our new Horizon academy branches in Ranpathvila and Ralapanawa in Anuradhapura district.

Horizon Lanka thanks to Room to Read for this generous donation. Thanks also go to Ms. Umeshi Rajeendra for coordinating this donation.

Ramanee Wanninayaka, the English Teacher, Horizon Academy, Anuradhapura City ramanee@horizonlanka.org.

Horizon Lanka Foundation Launches Horizon Academy – Ranpathvila on November 01, 2017

Horizon Lanka Foundation Launches Horizon Academy – Ranpathvila on November 01, 2017

Students at Horizon Academy in RanpathvilaHorizon Lanka Foundation (HLF) starts its flagship academic institute, the fourth branch of Horizon Academy in Ranpathvila, Kahatagasgidiliya, Anuradhapura tomorrow, November 01, 2017. The HLF started its first Horizon Academy in Mahawilachchiya in August 01, 1998 (19 years ago) and the second on May 01, 2017 in Tantirimale (5 months ago) and the third on September 01, 2017 in Anuradhapura City (one month ago) and have plans to start its 5th branch in Ralapanawa, Nochchiyagama, Anuradhapura on December 01, 2017.

The idea of starting a Horizon Academy in Ranpathvila is quite abrupt, unexpected and interesting. My eldest brother, Nayanasena Wanninayake who works as a civil engineer in the United Arab Emirates (and also a Sinhala lyrycyst) shared a story on Facebook about a young and energetic Sinhala teacher (Mr. Sugath Nayanananda) who contributed to a free nightly school classes program at Welusuamana Maha Vidyalaya, Thammannewa, Mihintale, Anuradhapura under the blessings of the then principal of the school Mrs. Lalana Dimuthu Wijayanganai. (She is the principal of Kahatagasdigiliya Central College now and continues the nightly school there too.) The subjects covered in this very productive program were Sinhala, English, science, mathematics, history, ICT and aesthetic subjects. The results of the program were amazing and the students’ pass rates at the national level exam GCE Ordinary Level usually taken by students during the final two years of Senior Secondary School [Grade 10 & 11 (usually ages 15–16)] improved significantly and both Welusuamana Maha Vidyalaya and Kahatagasdigiliya Central College successfully continue the program. I visited Welusuamana Maha Vidyalaya on my personal capacity a few weeks ago and met the staff and I am yet to visit Kahatagasdigiliya Central College.

Having shared the information about Sugath’s contribution to this exceptional program, my brother asked me if I could help them academically in any way possible. Since I have an “unending emotional bond” to the area and I saw this is a perfect program for Horizon Lanka to be of some service to the region, I had a couple of meetings with Sugath and we both decided to start a Horizon Academy branch in Ranpathvila where the students from Kahatagasdigiliya and Mihintale have easy access to since it is situated in the Anuradhapura – Trincomalee main road. There are around 10-15 smaller rural schools in the area and hopefully those students too could join Horizon Academy – Ranpathvila.

So, please share this story with the students and the youth in the adjoining areas and tell them to join Horizon Academy at their earliest. The Academy starts officially tomorrow (November 01, 2017) at 3.00 pm and the course fees for the first month (November) will be completely free of charge and there will be a fee of 500 LKR per student for a range of subjects from English to ICT to robotics to aesthetics subjects to sports.

So, come and join us at Horizon Academy, The First and Only Edutainment Academy of Sri Lanka. Miss Melissa Schmitt from France has joined the institute as the first foreign volunteer at the Academy.

Contact Mr. Sugath Nayanananda, the Manager of Horizon Academy – Ranpathvila at sugath@horizonlanka.org through email and on 077-4499924 or 071-4299924 on mobile or Mr. Namal Thissa, the English Teacher of the academy at namal@horizonlanka.org and on 077-4546484 or 071-9937398.

So, see you at Horizon Academy – Ranpathvila tomorrow at 3.00 pm.

Thanks to my brother Nayanasena Wanninayaka for making this connection which will in turn do a big difference in the education in the area. Let’s hope for the best.

Nanda Wanninayaka

Nanda, Madhu, Sugath, Melissa and Quentin at a meeting at Namal's house.
Nanda, Madhu, Sugath, Melissa and Quentin at a meeting at Namal’s house.
Sugath Nayanananda introducing the Horizon Academy program to students in Ranpathvila on September 26, 2017
Sugath Nayanananda introducing the Horizon Academy program to students in Ranpathvila on September 26, 2017
Nanda Wanninayaka introducing the Horizon Academy program to students in Ranpathvila on September 26, 2017
Nanda Wanninayaka introducing the Horizon Academy program to students in Ranpathvila on September 26, 2017
Students at the first awareness event at Ranpathvila on September 26, 2017
Students at the first awareness event at Ranpathvila on September 26, 2017
A statue of Gog Aiyanayaka, a regional god with an elephant head and trunk traditionally respected by villagers in Dry Zone of Sri Lanka
A statue of Gog Aiyanayaka, a regional god with an elephant head and trunk traditionally respected by villagers in Dry Zone of Sri Lanka

 

Improving 3G Mobile Coverage in Mahawilachchiya by Dialog Axiata – Update 3

Improving 3G Mobile Coverage in Mahawilachchiya by Dialog Axiata – Update 3

Dialog technical team at Prabodha Sandeepani's house in MahawilachchiyaDialog Axiata PLC provided 3G coverage to the whole Mahawilachchiya village in 2009 on the request of Mr. Nanda Wanninayaka, the Founder of Horizon Lanka Foundation long before some bigger towns in Anuradhapura were provided the facility. Of late, some of the other mobile operators like Hutch and Mobitel also extended their 2G coverages into 3G but only small pockets of the village are covered with 3G access by them while Dialog Axiata uses two communication towers in Mahawilachchiya to provide a wider 3G coverage.

With the number of Dialog customers being increased for both voice and data, the Dialog 3G connectivity has become slow of late and it is difficult to enjoy an uninterrupted 3G coverage as the 3G facility keeps switching between 3G (HSPA) and 2G (EDGE) coverage quite often and the communication is affected. It even deteriorated with the arrival of the monsoon rains.

So, Mr. Nuwan Samaranayake, a Sri Lankan born software engineer who works in Houston, Texas, USA was keen to have a stronger 3G coverage in Mahawilachchiya as he is using internet to teach a student named Aruni Apsara of Grade 9. He uses both Skype and Facebook facetime to teach her and the results are amazing. The lucky girl has bettered her marks at each term tests in English, science and mathematics due to untiring efforts of Mr. Samaranayake. He was worried when the communication started being affected due to low signals. He asked Mr. Wanninayaka as how to solve this problem because he is planning to encourage Houston-based Sri Lankan American community to teach more students in Mahawilachchiya village using Internet. Mr. Wanninayaka told him the best thing would be to raise the issue with Dialog Axiata’s young CEO Mr. Supun Weerasinghe himself. The former did so and the latter immediately sent a technical team on October 26, 2017 to go to a few affected students’ houses and check the internet signals. The team headed by Mr. Kasun Aththanayaka of Dialog Axiata PLC went to affected students’ houses and reported the problem to the Dialog Head Office. Now they are working on readjusting the communication devices at Dialog Axiata’s tower at Kiralpetiyawa, Mahawilachchiya to improve the quality of the coverage.

We at Horizon Lanka Foundation thank Mr. Nuwan Samaranayake for raising the issue with Dialog Axiata and Mr. Supun Weerasinghe for the prompt action. Let us hope that the 3G coverage in Mahawilachchiya be improved significantly and the students and the community of Mahawilachchiya would be benefitted as a result.

Dialog Axiata PLC has assisted Horizon Lanka Foundation over the years whenever we requested their assistance. Read more at http://www.horizonlanka.org/en/?s=Dialog+telekom&submit=Search

Dialog technical team at Aruni Apsara's house in Mahawilachchiya

Dialog technical team at Pramodhya Umayangani's house in Mahawilachchiya

A Dedicated Internet Connection to Horizon Lanka Foundation from Dialog Axiata – Update 2

A Dedicated Internet Connection to Horizon Lanka Foundation from Dialog Axiata – Update 2

Dialog Axiata staff with the students of Horizon Academy, Mahawilachchiya

Since July, 2014, with the resumption of our academic activities after a lapse of 3 and half years, the Horizon Lanka Foundation is using Dialog 3G broadband internet facilities using an internet dongle to connect to the Internet. Only Dialog Axiata PLC provides decent 3G coverage to the whole Mahawilachchiya village while the other operators are covering only small pockets of the village with 3G access.

With the number of Dialog customers being increased for both voice and data, the connectivity became slow of late and it was difficult to enjoy an uninterrupted 3G coverage as the 3G facility started to switch between 3G (HSPA) and 2G (EDGE) coverage quite often and the communication was affected. It even deteriorated with the arrival of the monsoon rainy season.

So, Mr. Nuwan Samaranayake, a gentleman who works in Houston, Texas, USA was keen to have a stronger 3G coverage in Mahawilachchiya as he is using internet to teach a student called Aruni Apsara of Grade 9. He uses both Skype and Facebook facetime to teach her and the results are amazing. The lucky girl has bettered her marks at each term tests in English, science and mathematics due to untiring efforts of Mr. Samaranayake. He was worried when the communication started affecting due to low signals. He asked me how to solve this problem because he is planning to encourage Houston-based Sri Lankan American community to teach more students in the village using Internet. I told him the best thing would be to raise the issue with Dialog Axiata’s young CEO Mr. Supun Weerasinghe. The former did so and Mr. Weerasinghe immediately sent a technical team to see what technology can be used to provide an uninterrupted data line to Horizon Lanka and the rest of the village.

A team of technicians from Dialog Axiata visited Mahawilachchiya on October 13, 2017 and they decided to erect an additional tower at the Horizon Lanka Foundation premises as a solution. Since they did not have the equipment in their stores at that time, they left the village with the promise of returning with the equipment as soon as they were available.

The Dialog Axiata technical team returned to Horizon Lanka Foundation, Mahawilachchiya on October 18, 2017 with the necessary equipment and the technicians. They erected a tower at Horizon Lanka and tested the signal strength. We were lucky to hear from the team leader that the signal strength is very satisfying and they can connect Horizon Lanka to a very decent internet backbone with Dialog Axiata. The team told us that they would report the results to the company and the company would get back to us with the necessary paperwork and the agreements in two weeks. As soon as those formalities are done, the children at Horizon Academy, Mahawilachchiya will have unlimited faster access to the Internet like they used to have during the period April 2004 to February 2011. This would make a big difference in the academic achievements of the children in Mahawilachchiya in the coming months.

We at Horizon Lanka Foundation thank Mr. Nuwan Samaranayake for raising the issue with Dialog Axiata and Mr. Supun Weerasinghe for the prompt action. Let us hope that a dedicated and faster internet connection would be made available for both Horizon Lanka Foundation and the rest of the village soon.

Dialog Axiata PLC has assisted Horizon Lanka Foundation over the years whenever we requested their assistance. Read more at http://www.horizonlanka.org/en/?s=Dialog+telekom&submit=Search