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September 15, 2023

We Are One

Project Overview

Sarvodaya’s national initiative ‘We Are One’ was launched in April 2022 and consists of a multi-pronged response to ensure food security at the community level and to act as a social safety net. 


The Problem

Due to contributing factors such as poor governance, degrading fiscal and economic affairs, and heightening geopolitics in the region, Sri Lanka is currently experiencing a downward spiral bringing forth negative outcomes severely affecting multiple dimensions of social protection and welfare. Among such, Food insecurity stands as the paramount issue at hand. The issue is furthermore exacerbated by inflation which is at an all-time high and increasing rapidly resulting in high levels of food insecurity. 

The Solution

Food-related support will be delivered mainly through the Food Banks and Community Kitchens programme. Home and Community Gardening (HCG) is promoted as an additional activity for children and communities to come together as a recreational and psychosocial support activity. Sarvodaya’s Public Health initiative Suwodaya will also contribute in terms of medical crisis response.  


The twenty-five Sarvodaya District Centres throughout the Island actively operate as Community Food Banks (CFB). The District Centres function as the key focal points to identify needs as well as to deliver relief to the diverse pool of beneficiaries. The CFBs are dual purposed to function as donation-receiving centres as well as to function as re-distribution centres for families that require essential supplies.  

Sarvodaya Community Kitchens currently operate under three categories i.e., Pre-Schools, Primary Schools, and Urban Community based. Hot meals are prepared and served on-site while encouraging community pooling of resources and labour (Shramadana) required to prepare and serve meals.  

The HCG initiative promotes home and community gardening in urban, semi-urban and rural community settings. It aims to generate more home and community-based food production with a greater emphasis on psycho-social well-being. Sarvodaya sponsors part of the seeds and saplings required to initiate the programme while requesting communities to contribute to the initiative in their capacities.  

The Impact

WeAreOne aims to support 500,000 families across Sri Lanka’s 25 districts. Identified Key Beneficiary groups consist of families with primary school children, pregnant and lactating mothers, disabled, widowed, senior citizens, medically challenged and families with complex difficulties based at identified marginalised and low-income communities. The project will reinforce Sri Lanka’s existing social protection mechanisms by ensuring food security for vulnerable and marginalised communities. It will furthermore sensitise and inspire the public to help and care for each other through a widespread media campaign by tapping into and capitalizing upon traditional socio-cultural values in Sri Lanka.  

Sarvodaya Shramadana Movement for the People in Need.