The mission of Extra Cover is to help some of Sri Lanka’s poorest school children grow up with hope. It provides basic essentials – from food and clean water to toilets and textbooks – to twenty four extremely poor jungle schools in the south of the island. As funds allow, it also builds extra classrooms, installs playground equipment, runs tea and cinnamon-growing cooperatives, and oversees vocational schools.
Extra Cover has no axe (political, ideological or religious) to grind … we just want to help children learn and enjoy life.
Will you please help? Here’s what your money can buy: £5 buys textbooks for a whole class, £10 pays for a day’s breakfast for an entire school, £50 feeds a child for a year, £300.00 covers the cost of building a new toilet, £500 pays for a well, and with £5000 Extra Cover can build a new school, offering a wonderful future to some of the world’s most deserving children
How it all started
Days before the Boxing Day of 2004 claimed thirty thousand lives in Sri Lanka, 27 Brighton College pupils flew back to Heathrow after a hugely successful cricket tour of the island. Determined to help a nation that had been such a wonderful host, Matthew Hansford and Robert Easton launched the aptly-named charity “Extra Cover”.
Matthew is the father of one of the cricket tourists and Robert a teacher at Brighton College.
Initially the main thrust of its programme was construction of new homes for victims of the disaster, and in the space of two years, the charity paid for the building of some 39 houses in the south of the country, as well as repairs to several schools near the water’s edge.
In 2007, the charity changed focus and turned its attention exclusively to the field of education. A few miles inland, away from public view, we found schools whose children were in desperate need of life’s essentials – food, water, shelter, medicines, clothing, and basic educational materials. Some children were coming to school with no shoes on their feet and no food in their stomachs. Some of the schools had no clean water supply. Let alone electricity. Let alone toilets. Let alone books, or pens or pencils.