Sri Lanka

Case Study: Sri Lanka | Disaster Risk Reduction

Episcopal Relief & Development partners with the Anglican dioceses of Colombo and Kurunegala and the Ecumenical Church Loan Fund on both short and long-term projects in Sri Lanka.

Working with the Anglican Diocese of Colombo, Episcopal Relief & Development supports efforts to build collaborative communities in the aftermath of decades of political conflict. Activities include training for community-led development and conflict resolution, empowering women and war-affected individuals through micro-finance and psychosocial support.

Episcopal Relief & Development partners with the Anglican Diocese of Colombo on a comprehensive disaster management and preparedness strategy. The Diocese of Colombo trains staff and clergy within the diocese to create disaster preparedness plans and engage their communities in building resilience and minimizing risk. The Diocese also works with the ecumenical National Christian Council of Sri Lanka (NCCSL) to equip other denominational leaders with knowledge and tools that help communities to prepare for and respond to disasters. 

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Episcopal Relief & Development International Program staff is providing guidance and technical expertise to the dioceses of Colombo and Kurunegala. Diocesan staff and volunteers are distributing food, while following best practices for physical distancing, to plantation and day workers who have lost income due to the virus and shutdowns. Additionally, the Diocese of Colombo is helping to sanitize schools and to provide them with PPE and thermometers which allow the schools to open safely and adhere to government regulations. 

Episcopal Relief & Development’s partnership with Ecumenical Church Loan Fund (ECLOF) Lanka began in response to the Indian Ocean tsunami in 2004. The program originally supported income generation activities in tsunami-affected and other marginalized areas and grew to incorporate self-help and savings groups. Through this work, ECLOF Lanka enables people to build their personal savings, invest in small business endeavors and earn an income to support their families.

From 2007 until 2019, the partnership with Episcopal Relief & Development built on that initial tsunami work to identify, train and equip female entrepreneurs in other parts of the country, particularly in the war-affected Northern Province. At the end of the final three-year strategy, Episcopal Relief & Development adjusted our strategy from a granting relationship to an investment relationship. Following a series of due-diligence activities, and adapting to the rapidly changing investment landscape in Sri Lanka, both ECLOF-Lanka and Episcopal Relief & Development agreed to support some institutional strengthening activities to equip ECLOF-Lanka to be better positioned for when investment will be viable. 

In 2020, ECLOF-Lanka is upgrading their Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning (MEL) processes through customized software and training of the staff in the use of the software application. The new MEL system will be able to better track not only financial indicators but also social-performance, household-level impact and staff effectiveness.


Our work with Women focuses on helping communities promote the rights of women and children and move toward the vision that everyone deserves a life free from violence in a society where they are treated with dignity and respect. Only then can communities truly heal and thrive.



Our Climate-related work focuses on how families and communities can work together to adapt to the effects of rapidly changing weather patterns. This work includes preparing for and recovering from climate-influenced events such as floods, hurricanes and other disasters.

Planning ahead for disasters can go far in minimizing their potential impact – especially for people already facing poverty, who may lose their few assets or safety nets. To this end, Episcopal Relief & Development is partnering with the Episcopal/Anglican Church to better prepare for and respond to disasters. Read more about Disaster Risk Reduction.

Read more about Disaster Resilience

Our micro-finance programs emphasize involving both women and men, which can be very effective in promoting gender awareness and empowering women. When women become breadwinners, they increase their role in household decision-making, which often enhances the whole family’s well-being. Read more about Micro-finance.

Read more about Micro-finance

Gender equality, women’s empowerment and gender-based violence (GBV) prevention and response are cross-cutting themes that shape and inform all of Episcopal Relief & Development’s integrated programs worldwide. In order to sustainably and equitably address hunger, poverty, disease and post-disaster relief and recovery, local attitudes and customs around gender, power and gender-based violence must also be taken into account.

Read more about Gender Equality & GBV