December in Sri Lanka

Sandra Evans and Jason Redpath
Sandra Evans and Jason Redpath

A former Northumberland middle school pupil is taking a different kind of trip this December to help children who were affected by the Sri Lankan tsunami.

While other youngsters will be getting ready for Christmas parties and festivities, nine-year-old Jason Redpath will be seeing how children in Sri Lanka survive with poor sanitation, little money and losing their homes and families to natural disasters.

Accompanied by his grandma, Sandra Evans, a former mayor of Berwick who lives at Bradford near Bamburgh, Jason will be living among those who were affected by the 2004 disaster.

He will be working with the charity Project Sri Lanka, which his grandma has been visiting since 2008.

Jason will learn about the culture and religion, visit schools and a boys’ orphanage, see a Buddhist monk and exchange prayers and he will also teach dance skills to older children while he is taught their traditional dance in return.

Jason said: “I want to go out there to compare lives. “We have cars and proper toilets and they have a hole and a tuk tuk.

“I would like to go out there to see how they live and to learn why they are in such poverty and misery yet they are so happy and we are always complaining and we have everything.”

Jason is raising money for his trip through a variety of endeavours.