Eastern Social Development Foundation (ESDF)

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ESDF was set up to support vulnerable women and to provide them with opportunities to meet their rights and access to service delivery needs in Sri Lanka.
Last updated: October 2016

The Eastern Social Development Foundation (ESDF) is a rights based women's and development organisation which was established on March 2010. ESDF is an initiative of a group of social activists in the in the Eastern Province of Sri Lanka. The organisation was set up to support vulnerable women and to provide them with opportunities to meet their rights and access to service delivery needs.


ESDF see women as disproportionately affected by conflict and therefore require special consideration. ESDF focuses on the women living in conflict affected areas and strives to identify and address their issues. This is especially important given the multicultural nature and the conflict history of the Eastern Province, and the significance of the role women play in the society.

ESDF’s vision is “creating a society towards rights, equality and development”. It’s mission is “leading to a prosperous path for rights, equality and development by fulfilling needs in fields of human rights, gender equality, poverty reduction, good governance, ethnic reconciliation and educational development among multi cultured people”.

Eastern Social Development Foundation is registered under the Companies Act No. 07 of 2007 of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka.20151207_164416

The main activities of the organisation include:

  • Service provision to the victims of violence.
  • Capacity building of service providers.
  • Advocacy lobbing for policy, law, structural changes.
  • Promoting and protecting of human rights.
  • Eliminate and respond to gender-based violence.
  • Providing civil legal documentations.
  • Enhancing democratic governance through local government processes.
  • Strengthening access to justice and service delivery process of governmental institutions.
  • Improving activeness of civil society organisations by capacity and coalition building.
  • We Change Campaign for promote gender justice.
  • Enhancing domestic transitional justice mechanism.
  • Promoting ethnic reconciliation and peacebuilding among multi-ethnic groups.

ESDF has had the following impact in carrying out its work:

  • Ensured the protection and justice of the affected vulnerable people.
  • Increased institutional response to the victims with more access and services.
  • Reformed policies and structures among the government institutions.
  • Empowered and mobilised civilians to address and advocate for their needs and issues in a collective manner.
  • Increased activeness of civil society organisations to prevent community tense and promote ethnic harmony.
  • Empowered civil society organisations with awareness creation to involve them in social development and addressing essential issues irrespective of ethnicity.

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