Launched as a project to mark the 50th anniversary of the Hemas flagship brand Baby
Cheramy in 2012, the Big Heart Project partners with the Ministry of Child Development
and Women’s Affairs to ameliorate the effects of poverty on a child’s right to education.
After the 50th anniversary event, this project was handed over to the Hemas Outreach
Foundation for continuity.
A report published by the Department of Probation and Child Services reveals that there
are approximately 40,000 children at risk of dropping out of formal education due to
extreme poverty. The Nana Diriya programme initiated by the Department of Probation
and Child Services raises funds for these children. It is however an impossible task for a
single entity to handle such a massive task. Big Heart thus targets children who are
most at risk by funding the first five years of their essential schooling (Grades 1–5)
through the Nena Diriya Education Aid Program.
For the first time in 2013 The 1996 World Cup winning Sri Lankan Cricket team played
a one day after many years to raise funds and build awareness on the big heart project
which became a hit.
The Big Heart project benefitted 219 no children with their early education and the
program ended in year 2018.
They received a monthly sum of Rs. 2,000/- into their bank savings book through a
standing order. Rs. 1500/- is used for the child’s monthly expenses and the balance Rs.
500/- is compulsorily saved. At the end of every school term, the Ministry sends the
Hemas Outreach Foundation a progress report on the child’s performance. We were
thus able to measure and monitor the success of this project.