Ticket to Life (TTL) Project country coordinators are meeting from 5th to 8th October 2010 in Mirigama, Sri Lanka, to evaluate the progress of members in terms of their advancement in the Scout ranks. Members under the TTL are largely children living in the streets due to poverty, neglect or abandonment.
Currently the project has over 1200 Scout members in eight countries, and about one third are female. Focus for this year is to measure how the members have progressed in their Scout ranks with the hope that within next year or so, some of these children will earn the highest Scout rank in their national scout organizations, at par with any other Scout members in other Scout troops.
With over 12 overseas participants from 5 countries and another 11 Sri Lankan participants, the workshop is being held at the Lee Dasanayake Training Centre in Mirigama, an hour and a half travel from the capital city of Colombo.
Member of Parliament for Gampaha District and former Scout Hon. Wasantha Senanayake inaugurated the workshop. He praised the project for involving the most underserved segment of society and added that he himself owes much his values, character and self-confidence through Scouting. He assured that as a Scout, he will do his best to support Scouting in every possible way. Senanayake hails from a very reputable family in Sri Lanka who has held the position of first and third Prime Ministership after the independence of Sri Lanka.
In his opening remarks, Regional Director Abdullah Rasheed said that the basis of the project is to inspire street children to learn, at the same time, to share the values of Scouting. He highlighted the evident changes recorded at the beginning of this year during the evaluation workshop where the impact of Scouting on the lives of these children were measured using a sample size of over 400 children.
Present at the opening were Chief Commissioner Chandrasena Batuwangala, APR Management Sub Committee Chairman Janaprith Fernando and International Commissioner Shiraz Shalih who is the workshop director.
TTL project is now on its fourth year operating in 8 countries receiving support from several donors like the United States Fund for International Scouting (USFIS), APR Scout Foundation, the Scout Association of Japan and the Queen Sylvia Fund through the World Scout Foundation.