German couple assists Ilankaithurai fisher folk

[TamilNet, Friday, 11 March 2005, 02:26 GMT]
Dr Dedo Geinitz, former Team Leader of the Integrated Food Security Programme (IFSP) Trincomalee supported by GTZ and funded by the governments of Germany and Sri Lanka and Mrs Ruth Fode-Geinitz, their friends and family members from Germany have provided Rs 700,000 worth of fishing equipment to fishermen from Ilankaithurai, one of the poorest and most neglected villages in the Eachchilampathu division, south of the Trincomalee district, sources said.

German Gift
Dr.Dedo Geinitz handing over a canoe to a beneficiary


The donation was used to buy 16 canoes of 15 feet length plus adequate fishing gear. The first batch of 3 canoes was handed over last Sunday and the remaining 13 boats are expected to be ready in about a month.

The canoes are to be used by up to three fishermen from different families. More than 32 fishing families in the village could benefit from this donation, civil sources said.

A local NGO, Eachchilampattai United Development Association (EUAD), which is supported by UNDP and Oxfam and also received training in community mobilisation and leadership from CIRM, has been facilitating the distribution of the canoes and also continue to extend support to the Ilankaithurai Rural Development Society and Fisheries Cooperative Society, sources said.

Dr Geinitz and Mrs Geinitz decided to support the livelihoods of Ilankathurai following an appeal made by Mrs Rohini Singarayer, former Project Director IFSP and presently heading the Centre for Information Resources Management (CIRM) of the North East Provincial Council. The whole area is destroyed by the tsunami. Canoes, nets and fishing gear were swept away. Except from some relief the village has not received any material support yet, sources said.

"The fisher families will not be able to overcome the shock experienced of the tsunami without adequate equipment, help in skill's development, and assistance in building transport infrastructure and housing," said Dr Geinitz.

"We hope that the new canoes and nets will not only enable the families in Ilankaithurai to restart their livelihoods but also will create confidence for mobilising own resources and capacities," he added.

 

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