Sunayra Lanka was formed in 2016 by three people of Sri Lankan heritage, who wanted to find a way to contribute to Sri Lanka’s growth and development. In deciding the best way to focus their energy, they started by asking “What does the future of Sri Lanka look like?” This has now become the cornerstone of Sunayra Lanka’s mission. After witnessing the talent, ambition, and optimism in young people, the group members recognized that Sunayra Lanka needed to provide them with a support system to learn and grow. So, their vision is for young people to become the drivers of change in creating their own futures. “We firmly believe that community participation and feedback is the driving force behind our programming, and the only way to create long-lasting and sustainable change,” they say.

For the group, one of the greatest successes has been to see young women in their classes become more sure of themselves, exude confidence, and take up space that they would previously shy away from. Because their classes are mixed gender, this change was immediately evident. “On the flip side, the young men in our classes, who had initially been more vocal, now consciously make space for their female peers, and have developed the self-awareness to know when to give others a chance to share their thoughts,” they shared. The group firmly believes that holistic change can only happen with long-term programming and an intersectional approach to all learning objectives.