Power Foundation mainly works at a grassroots level amongst the tea plantation workers in central Sri Lanka. It acts to promote awareness of gender equality, to ease ethnic conflict, and to conduct peace building-building activities between the plantation workers and neighbouring villages.
They conduct ‘cultural sharing’ programs and educational programmes to promote ethnic cooperation between Sinhalese, Tamils and Muslims and to facilitate a better understanding on the conflict.
Tamil Youth Radio
This project provides a radio program in Tamil for the plantation community, particularly aimed at young people. It gives young people a space to access information, exposing them to outside sources - widening their perspective and giving them new approaches to solving conflicts and contributing to the peace building process by giving out unbiased information. Further, the initiative supports them in solving problems such as finding employment outside the plantations, corresponding with government officials in Sinhala, and participating in higher education.
Young Women’s Empowerment Programme
The Young Women’s Empowerment Programme targets talented young women who are interested in politics, and provides training and education intended to develop the participants into future political leaders of the plantation community. The hope is that the project leads to the inclusion of their voice in legislative structures such as Provincial Councils, widening the discussion of the conflict and peace process by including an as yet neglected voice.
Community Social Mobilisation Initiative
Although they form a large percentage of Tamils in Sri Lanka, the voice of the plantation workers is not very well represented in discussions related to ethnic conflict and peace process. In order to strengthen the voice of the plantation workers, this project aims to mobilise them into small groups, empower them through training and education, and encourages them to unite together as larger, stronger organisations. Training is provided to raise awareness of the ethnic conflict and related issues, and to provide them with the skills to organise, speak out and take action. Other programmes are also run which aim to ease tensions and improve the relationship between plantation workers and the surrounding communities.