The Islander Center is the heart of Sevalanka. It provides a neutral space for youth, community leaders and Sevalanka staff from all over the island to meet, discuss new ideas, share experiences, work and learn together, scaling up Sevalanka's village-level initiatives to a regional and national level. The location of the Islander Center has a feeling of remoteness and provides the atmosphere of an isolated retreat, yet its central location is readily accessible to participants from all parts of the island.
The name "Islander" signifies not only the interdependence of the social groups on the island, but also the dependence of Sri Lanka's entire human population on this fragile island environment. The Center promotes an 'Islander culture' based on a commitment to innovative, non-violent social change and a recognition of the value and interdependence of all beings.
Located near Wilpattu National Park in Anuradhapura, the Center's training complex includes classrooms, conference facilities, computer lab, library, international kitchen and dining hall and dormitories, hostels and guest rooms for 60 people. There are also recreational facilities, nature trails and a 50-acre farm that produces organic fruits, vegetables and rice, dairy and certified seed paddy.
The Islander Center coordinate a wide range of programs, including:
- 3-month residential training programs for rural youth leaders
- Specialized training programs and workshops for leaders of community organizations
- Retreats for dialog and strategic planning
- Organic agriculture demonstrations, experimental plots, nurseries and seed banks
Most programs include a mix of men and women from different regions of the country. Our full-time multilingual staff provide facilitation and translation support so that participants have an opportunity to share ideas, build understanding and develop new friendships across conventional linguistic, religious and regional divides.