Out of Darkness
Oxford College of Business
The Out of Darkness project identifies under-privileged children in extreme rural areas in Sri Lanka to provide them a more conducive learning environment by providing them lighting. Oxford College of Business and its alumni strongly believe education is not just every child’s right, but every human being’s.
INTRODUCTIONAll CSR activities undertaken by Oxford College of Business (OCB) are aimed at empowering people through education. Out of Darkness is a CSR initiative carried out by Oxford College of Business together with the OCB Alumni. This is our earnest attempt to give to those who cannot afford what we got for ourselves – “education in a more conducive environment”. Under the project, we aim to identify under privileged children in extreme rural areas and give them a chance to change their future through education. Offering light to their humble dwellings will inspire these children to study under more conducive learning conditions because Oxford College of Business believes knowledge does to a child’s future, what no other empowerment can.
This CSR project provides solar power panels to houses which do not have electricity. The sole aim of this project is to provide lighting for these houses so that the children can study at night.
FRAMEWORK AND STRATEGYThe Out of Darkness project identifies under-privileged children in extreme rural areas in Sri Lanka to provide them a more conducive learning environment by providing them lighting. Oxford College of Business and its alumni strongly believe education is not just every child’s right, but every human being’s. One of the biggest challenges facing these children is the unavailability of electricity in their homes which prevents them from studying at night. This is unfortunate as most of these children can only study at night as they have to help their parents in their agriculture activities after school during the day. Out of Darkness is the only CSR project in Sri Lanka which takes a bold attempt to empower underprivileged children through education by providing them a more conducive environment.
ACHIEVEMENT AND IMPACTThe first phase of the Out of Darkness CSR project was to provide electricity to one of the most remote villages in ‘’Wilpattu”. Oxford College of Business, together with its alumni, has identified several other poor and rural villages in the east coast, the south and the north central provinces to implement under the next four phases. In the first phase electricity supply was installed in 15 units with another 25 units identified for the second phase.
Evaluation following the move showed that 70 per cent of these children showed a 100 percent improvement in attending to homework given by the schools after their homes were installed with electricity supply. Furthermore, this project has inspire some people on the island to promote this concept together with Oxford College of Business and its alumni resulting in more houses being installed with electricity sooner than expected. Oxford College of Business is an ISO 14001: 2004 certified environment friendly organization which always promotes eco-friendly activities such as usage of solar energy.
FUTURE DIRECTIONOxford College of Business and its alumni are committed to light up 100 homes by the end of 2016 and extend the programme to 250 homes by 2017 and 600 homes by the end of 2018. We do not intend to stop there but to continue until all under privileged homes in the country are able to enjoy electricity supply so that the children can study under more conducive environments.
Oxford College of Business is widely regarded as Sri Lanka’s No.1 Business School and is the 1st and only education provider in Sri Lanka to hold the triple international certifications of ISO 9001:2008, ISO 14001:2004 and British Standard OSHAS 18001.