Letter from the CEO

Dear Friends of Aidha,

Hope you have been staying safe and well through these unprecedented times.

Since the pandemic started to take hold in the early part of this year Aidha, like everyone, has been very busy adapting to a changed world. You will have received an update in May on all our various new online activities and these have continued apace over June and July as well. With the gradual easing of restrictions, we very much hope we can be back at our campus soon but we are also making contingency plans to potentially bring even more of our classes online in case that is not possible.

WhatsApp Image 2020-07-23 at 11.03.18 AM

Taking learning online with our Module 3 students!

Since May we have enabled 4 classes from Module 2 and Module 3 who were near the end of their course when campus closed, to complete the module online, and we have also done the same for students near the end of their Money Management 1 and Communication and Confidence courses of Module 1. For English students we have also launched an English Club (incidentally initiated by our volunteers Belinda and Meenakshi who are featured in our volunteer spotlight below!) with weekly exercises and live online practice sessions via Zoom. We hope, over time, to be able to offer the continuation of classes to more and more of our currently enrolled students.

aidha birthday photo montage

All-smiles from the recent online graduates of Module 2!

Besides the online continuation of core courses, whilst campus has been closed we’re offering students a variety of free Zoom learning sessions on subjects such as Understanding Debt, Building Your Resilience, Digital Marketing, Dealing with Stress and Using the Internet Safely, and will soon launch sessions on Opening a Bank Account and E-Remittances. We’re also continuing to offer our weekly online wellness sessions, including live Zumba and Yoga sessions. Many thanks to our corporate partners and volunteers for helping us put together and/or deliver these sessions!

We also celebrated a very special milestone this past week, Aidha’s 14th birthday!! For the first time ever we held a virtual panel discussion featuring two of our alumni, Joy Mompal and Yuliani, who are both operating successful businesses in their home countries. The discussion was moderated by Ting Claravall, an Aidha mentor and volunteer since 2009, who you may also recognise as the long-time Master of Ceremonies for our annual graduation. We also had a special message from Nilu Silva, another Aidha alumna, who has founded Nilu Tea (available on Redmart) and a Sri Lankan NGO that helps women micro-entrepreneurs, Emerging Hope Lanka. You can watch the full panel discussion as well as live Q&A session here.

Aidha Anniversary 2020 (3)

Our first ever virtual panel discussion featuring notable Aidha alumni and business owners Joy, Yuliani and Nilu, and moderated by Ting.

Also, as another birthday treat to ourselves, we created a short birthday video that looks back on 14 years of Aidha which you can watch here.

Last but not least, we know it’s been a while since graduation, but we’ve created another short video to commemorate our 2019 graduation, so please enjoy it here and you can read more about it below as well.

If you’d like to get more frequent news of Aidha’s activities, follow our Facebook page or our LinkedIn page where we post regular updates!

Warmest regards, Jackie.

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