Pahamune House is a privately funded home caring for over fifty children who are aged from 5 to 16 at present. Pahamune is registered with the Sri Lankan National Child Protection Authority and is supervised by the Department of Probation and Child Care Services.
Pahamune House is located on Katupotha Road, Pahamune at Narammala in the Kurunegala District
North Western Province of Sri Lanka.
Pahamune House was set up as an act of generosity by Desamanya Dr A M M Sahabdeen, a leading Sri Lankan philanthropist. It is currently run as part of his charitable foundation
incorporated by Act of Parliament No. 3 of 1991, Sri Lanka.
This also offers scholarships to local students for higher study both here and abroad. However Pahamune House is now organised as an independent body linked to his wider charity work.
We have already been the subject of a BBC documentary detailing the initial stages of establishing Pahamune House and this was broadcast in early 2006.
Pahamune House was originally established in the immediate aftermath of the December 2004 tsunami. At that time Pahamune House accepted over one hundred children who had lost one or both parents in the tsunami as well as others who had seen their communities destroyed by its effects. Since then the home has extended its work to accept children whose families have been severely affected by poverty and the recent escalation of violence in Sri Lanka. At present we have 50 children in our care and over 100 more on our waiting list.
We also offer places to children whose families have lived in refugee camps and who are referred to us by the probation service because they have been deserted by their parents or have suffered some form of abuse.
Uniquely for Sri Lanka our children are drawn from across the country. The majority are drawn from the East Coast areas which have been destroyed by violence and the tsunami. However we also have students from the Hill Country whose parents are extremely poor labourers on tea estates or have been forced to retire by disability. Equally unusually the home, although run by a Muslim charity, is committed to accepting children from all of the major religions within the country. This allows us to integrate students and to teach them about the beliefs and rituals of other faiths while allowing them the teachers and opportunities to explore and practice their own beliefs.