Satyodaya Centre

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Satyodaya Centre
Established1972; 50 years ago (1972)
Fr. Christian Perera, SJ
Malkanthi Herath
Sri Lanka Jesuits
Main organ
Satyodaya Newsletter
AffiliationsJesuit, Catholic

Satyodaya Centre for Social Research and Encounter was founded by the Jesuits and local diocese in 1972, for the socioeconomic development of peoples residing in the plantation areas of Central and Sabaragamuwa provinces of Sri Lanka.[1]


Satyodaya was founded in 1972 by Bishop Leo Nanayakkara, O.S.B., a social activist,[2] and Fr. Paul Caspersz, S.J.,[3] an Oxford-trained researcher. They were determined to improve the living standards and secure the rights of the most impoverished peasants and plantation workers in Sri Lanka. It was a time of economic and political turmoil worldwide and progressive reforms were being implemented in Sri Lanka with the nationalization of land and of private schools.[4] In 1974 Satyodaya spawned the Coordinating Secretariat for Plantation Areas (CSPA) in Kandy, and in 1979 Fr. Paul founded the Movement for Inter Racial Justice and Equality (MIRJE).[5]


In devising programs Satyodaya relies on requests from communities, workshops, discussion within the Society of Jesus, and availability of funds. Programs are focused mainly on plantations and adjacent villages. The following areas are included: socio-economic research, training, social mobilization, educational development as well as development on behalf of women and children, environmentally sustainable agriculture, nutrition, and health.[6]


Satyodaya can accommodate 65 in its fully equipped conference hall. It has housing for 32, two to a room, plus a 15-bed dormitory. The library contains 20,000 volumes besides periodicals and research papers.[7]


Satyodaya Newsletter is published quarterly. Books published by the Centre range over a host of topics: The Privatization of the Plantations; Impact of Time and Environment upon Students in Plantation Area Secondary Schools in the districts of Nuwara Eliya and Kandy; Child Labour (on Sri Lanka plantations); Sri Lanka Repatriates in South India; Youth and Development; A Socio-economic Perspective of the Plantation Community in Sri Lanka; New Electoral System for Local Government, proposals; Plantation Sector and the Peace Process; The Peace Process; Dreamboats: Short Stories from the Sri Lankan Plantation; Alcoholism in the Sri Lankan Plantation Community; A New Culture for a New Society.[8]


  1. "Satyodaya Voluntary Development Organization Sri Lanka". Retrieved 2017-02-21.[non-primary source needed]
  2. "satmag4.html". Retrieved 2017-02-21.
  3. "A Man Full Of Passionate And Selfless Intensity | The Sunday Leader". Retrieved 2017-02-21.
  4. "About Us | Satyodaya Voluntary Development Organization". Retrieved 2017-02-21.[non-primary source needed]
  5. Refugees, United Nations High Commissioner for. "Refworld | Sri Lanka: Information on the Movement for Inter-Racial Justice and Equality (MIRJE) and its "Legal Assistance Programme"". Refworld. Retrieved 2017-02-21.
  6. "Programmes | Satyodaya Voluntary Development Organization". Retrieved 2017-02-21.[non-primary source needed]
  7. "Our Facilities | Satyodaya Voluntary Development Organization". Retrieved 2017-02-21.[non-primary source needed]
  8. "Publications | Satyodaya Voluntary Development Organization". Retrieved 2017-02-21.[non-primary source needed]

Coordinates: 7°17′35.49″N 80°37′45.94″E / 7.2931917°N 80.6294278°E / 7.2931917; 80.6294278

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