‘Life as Art’ an exhibition of photographs
‘Life as Art’, an exhibition and sale of photographs by Chatrini
Weeratunge in aid of Emerge Lanka Foundation to support girl children
who have survived sexual abuse, will be held at the Barefoot Gallery
from November 28-30. Weeratunge, a photographer specialising in art,
travel and humanitarian photography. Currently a scholar at the Lee Kuan
Yew School of Public Policy at the National University of Singapore, she
sees photography as an art and a tool to promote awareness of various
Her photography complements her career as a development specialist.
‘Life as Art’ will showcase a collection of photographs by Weeratunge
that capture the intrinsic beauty of the world around her highlighted
through the subtleties of light and colour. These images offer an
insight into the lives of those she photographs, placing particular
emphasis on movement and style.
The photographs will be available for sale with all proceeds set to
go towards Emerge Lanka Foundation's Reintegration Program for young
survivors of sexual abuse.
Emerge Lanka Foundation is a charitable organisation that works with
girls 10-18 years who have survived sexual abuse and are placed in
shelters for their protection as they are testifying in court against
The Emerge program includes Life Skills, Mentorship and its unique
Beads-to-Business curriculum, which teaches girls to make high quality
jewellery as well as the entrepreneurial and financial skills enabling
them to become independent women as well as leaders of their
Each unique piece of jewellery is sold in the United States, Sri
Lanka - Barefoot, Buddhi Batiks, Selyn, Whatever Studio, Cozy Linen,
White Walk and Cantaloupe Aqua – and online.
One-hundred percent of the profits are deposited into the girls’
individual savings accounts, which they can use as adults to take care
of themselves, and in some cases, their children.
Charuni Ranchigoda, Reintegration Officer at Emerge Lanka said, “Our
reintegration program is designed to provide support for the girls after
they have left the shelter for a new start on life in the outside world.
As part of the reintegration program, Emerge aims to establish an
empowerment centre designed to increase employability of the girls as
well as support them in the crucial three month period after leaving
In the frame of a halfway house, the girls are enrolled in curricula
that increase their employability as well as connected with resources
such as educational and vocational training and business opportunities
while providing them with emotional support as well as food and lodging.
Emerge Lanka also actively assists them to find jobs and or get further
Emerge continues to keep track of the girls even after they have left
the nest. However, the staff is always available to offer advice,
assistance or just talk and meet the girls to make sure they are doing
well, culminating in an annual reunion.