Today’s work visit of Paul, our treasurer, to Daya Mina Special Centre in Colombo (Sri Lanka) was instructive, moving and commanded a lot of respect. In this centre, mentally disabled young people learn skills that enable them to participate in society, work processes, sport and recreation.

During the visit about 40 young people were at the centre with different forms and different gradations of mental disabilities – e.g. autism, ADHD and Down Syndrome. But what they all have in common is their incredible enthusiasm to learn a skill. A girl proudly told him that she had succeeded in getting a thread through a needle, something her coach / therapist had done for her so far, but what she so desperately wanted to do herself. Others clearly have talent in painting fabrics that are used to make table cloths and napkins.

We take a deep bow for all the coaches / therapists in the centre, some of them volunteers. Sister Anastasia, who leads the centre, explains extensively about the challenges they face. Hats off to the centre’s staff, their perseverance and the love they put in their work.

The day ended with some dance performances by the girls and the boys. Beautifully dressed, cheerful and happy, and very proud of their performance. It was great to see the smiles on their faces; they enjoyed it !! And Paul maybe even more!

Look for an impression of Paul’s work visit to Daya Mina at

Over a period of four years, the Van Doorn Foundation will support the Daya Mina Special Centre to run their training programmes. Funds are needed for that. Do you want to make a financial contribution to this project?
Read more about this project!