New Year Celebration & Teachers Day at “Mithuru Mithuro” 2008

New Year Celebration – 2008

Mithuru Mithuro celebrated yet another Sinhala, Tamil and Hindu New Year at “Nisansala” (at Gampaha on 10th April 2008 – three days prior to actual New Year day), a Center of the Mithuru Mithuro family dedicated towards rehabilitation and treatment for drug affected individuals.

This is an annual function where resident treatment seeking rehabilitants congregate at one center to celebrate the New Year with each other and their families. While most of the traditional New Year games are held on this day, not only the residents but their families along with their children are also encouraged to partake in the fun. The kids of Mithuru Mithuro Orphanage also participate at this function.

All families are to bring a home cooked special lunch for their loved ones who are under “Mithuru Mithuro” care and during lunch the families are to sit together at a chosen location (picnic style) and enjoy the meal filled with love and affection.

The most important and the most emotional time on this special day is when residents are united with their families for a brief period and a special discourse / presentation is done by Ven. Kuppiyawatte Bodananda Thero emphasizing on mothers and fathers love. It is the time for the children to then seek forgiveness from their parents for all the wrong they have done. This absolutely makes almost every one emotional and many break down In the arms of each other. Ultimate goal is to heal the hearts and the minds of the parents as well as the children being rehabilitated. The uniqueness of this all is that “Mithuru Mithuro” is the only institution that provide such an opportunity to their residents and also respects the traditions and Sri Lankan customs. The events and the memorable day comes to an end with this and the residents bid farewell to their families and return to their respective centers to continue with the rehabilitation program.

Though such a celebration is held on behalf of the residents and their families, “Mithuru Mithuro” follows all applicable customs with respect to the Sri Lankan tradition at each center. Most auspicious times are adhered to and the staff at each center celebrates the New Year with their residents on the New Year day. We at “Mithuru Mithuro Sevena” in Pelmadulla also celebrated same along with our dear reverend Ven. Kuppiyawatte Bodananda Thero.

Having celebrates among ourselves and then with the families we go on to hold a special function where all Unit Managers and external advisors visit Rev Bodhi at Pelmadulla. This is a separate function where the Unit Managers and the special guests who were once addicts share their success stories with the current residents at our main center.

Teachers Day at “Mithuru Mithuro”

Remembering our Alma Mata is quite customary to all of us and this goes very much hand in hand with remembering our teachers. Though we know that the World Teacher’s Day falls on the last Friday of the month of October, “Mithuru Mithuro Movement” traditionally celebrates the “Teacher’s Day” soon after the “Sinhala and Hindhu New Year”. This time it fell on Sunday, the 27th of April 2008. It was the twelfth consecutive time that this celebration was organized and held by “Mithuru Mithuro”.

Being a teacher is hard work! It is an often-thankless job that has implications far into the future. The lives teachers touch each day will grow to shape our tomorrows. In efforts to recognize the impact teachers have on all of us, many types of celebrations are held in schools throughout the country and the world to honor and appreciate teachers for the invaluable work they do each day. In the spirit of Teacher Appreciation, we at “Mithuru Mithuro” celebrate the teachers (retired and current) of Nalanda College annually, the Alma Mata of Rev Kuppiyawatte Bodananda Thero.

After welcoming the current principal of Nalanda College, his deputy, the retired staff and also the retired principals and staff, old boys and parents in grand fashion and having brought them to “Mithuru Mithuro” in a parade, they were warmly greeted by the residents of the treatment and rehabilitation center. This is known to be a very emotional encounter as it gives the opportunity for the residents to personally take care of a selected teacher and look after him/her as his own teacher for the remainder of the day. The purpose is to help residents to look in retrospect at times when they dishonored their teachers in school when they were abusing drugs and to help them seek forgiveness for all the wrong they committed. The ultimate objective is to heal the hearts of the residents and help them rid themselves of any guilt that they may have been living with since the past.

There were over 70 invitees and the assembly was first entertained by the “Mithuru Mithuro” family as usual. There were dramas, cultural events and presentations, etc. when it was time for lunch, each resident was to present the food to their respective elderly teacher as an offering and attend to same until lunch was over. All residents worked hard and were devoted and were determined to make this day a success.

Finally, after lunch it was time to present each teacher with a gift of appreciation and a farewell card. Most old boys spoke at the finale expressing their views and the retired teachers and the current deputy principal also shared views with audience. By and large the whole program was a success and was cause for great pleasure. We hope to continue our tradition to the next year as well.