Walk-a-Mile: Thomians Near and Far work together raising funds for 4 key Projects in monumental effort

In a one of a kind project undertaken by the Old Boys’ Association of S. Thomas’ College Mt. Lavinia, together with the Gurutalawa OBA, the Walk-a-Mile project is approaching its conclusion, having raised funds for 4 key infrastructure initiatives for the College.

The project brought together Old Boys, Parents, Students, Corporate Sponsors and well-wishers from around the world in this pioneering effort and will go down in history as one of the largest coordinated fund-raising initiatives of the OBA or the College. This is a phenominal effort by all parties involved, especially considering the fact that it was initiated in the midst of a Global Pandemic and will be concluded in the midst of a Financial and Economic crisis.

Smart Classroom Project

With help of donations from our Old Boys and proceeds from the Thomian Ride by the class of 82 which took place a few years ago, the College has been able to equip some of the classrooms with Smart-boards. The Smart-boards have helped to make teaching much more engaging for the students.

Having conducted one and a half years of online schooling, the teachers have been able to produce wonderfully interactive lessons filled with animations and videos, and the requirement for all classrooms to be equipped with Smart-boards have become not just a nice-to-have but a necessity as we returned to physical school.

The OBA has successfully achieved our goal to equiping the remaining 80 classrooms with Smart-boards. All smart boards were installed over the weekend, and are now in operation. We are confident that smart boards will help teachers improve the standard of delivery of lessons, creating significant value to our students.

The project was carried out in parallel to the ongoing fundraising activity in order to keep costs constant amidst high inflation. We expect to accomplish our fundraising goals in short order.

Senior Quadrangle Project – 3rd Phase

This project involves building four additional classrooms (two each on the ground floor and first floor) and a Performing Arts Studio (in memory of The Late Mr Vinodh Senadeera) on the top floor of the building.

This phase is designed in such a way that there will be a separate entrance from Hotel Road, and as such, the premises, particularly the Studio, can be hired by outside parties to generate additional income for the College. The OBA has successfully delivered on the commitment to fund 50% of the original infrastructure cost of this project. This phase of the building was declared open by the Rt. Rev. Dushantha Rodrigo, Lord Bishop of Colombo, on the 6th of October 2022.

The Gurutalawa Project

STC Guruthalawa is a beloved branch schools of S Thomas’ College, Mount Lavinia. Through Walk A Mile and executed via the Guru OBA, we have been able to help raise much needed funds for projects to be carried out by STC Gurutalawa including new classrooms and other urgent infrastructure developments.

Pavilion Project

While the College boasts arguably one of the best and most scenic school cricket grounds in Sri Lanka, the current Pavillion is no longer fit for purpose and the requirements of our budding sportsmen of today. Some of the features of the new Pavilion planned include upgraded dressing rooms for home and away teams, ice bath and massage tables, unrestricted viewing for spectators, warm-up areas, dining facilities, women’s facilities etc.

The Walk-a-Mile project is expected to fund a substantial part of the total infrastructure cost of this project.


The idea for Walk-a-Mile was conceived during an OBA ExCo meeting when we were brainstorming on projects that can be carried out in spite of the Global Pandemic. Mr Richard de Zoyza, the Project Chairman, came up with the concept of walking a mile for STC from wherever you are, to help raise funds, given the lockdowns in place at the time. Tilan Wickramasinghe, the Secretary of the OBA at the time, who is ever the Tech evangalist, built on Richard’s idea and suggested to build a tech platform where the global fratenity can work together to raise funds in unison. https://walkamile.stcmloba.com/. The project was eventually executed by the Walk-a-Mile committee of the137th ExCo of the OBA under the new Secretary of the OBA. Chandana Williams, the Secretary of the Walk-a-Mile Committee, Rukshan Kuru-Utumpala the Walk Event committee chair, Sudath de Silva, Senaka de Fonseka, Roshane Nanayakkara, Manojith Weerasooriya, Ashean Karthelis, Shamin Jayewickreme, Puritha Wijewickreme and many others have stepped forward to make this project a grand success.


23 Batch Groups from 1956 to 2021 participated in raising funds, with 18 of these batch groups contributing at least one Smart Board. The Class of 1961 heads the leaderboard, closely followed by the Class of 2002. The Class Groups funded nearly 30% of the total funds raised to-date.

Corporate Sponsors such as St. Anthony’s Group, HNB, GS Sports, Akbar Brothers, Ceylinco Life, and Bernards contributed nearly 20% of the funds.

Students, using the online system and manual donation cards also canvassed friends and family to raise a sum of funds to match the corporate donations.

9 Overseas Chapters of the OBA from Australia (NSW, Perth, Melbourne), US (California, New York, Washington), Canada (Western Canada, Toronto) and Qatar also rallied round the college to contribute approximately 15% of the funds raised to date, with more being pledged by a few other Chapters, including the UK Chapter. The California Chapter is at the top of the leaderboard at present.

Additionally, there were many substantial individual contributions from Old Boys and non-old boys alike.


The one mile Walk around the college premises, followed by a mini carnival will be held on Friday 21st of October 2022, siginifying the successful completion of the project. For more details on the event, please visit https://www.stcmloba.com/newsroom/news/Walk-a-Mile-for-STC-This-Friday-21st-October.dz. The OTAUK, the UK chapter of the OBA will have their walk on Saturday the 22nd of October.


With more Donor cards from students pending reconcilliation and pending contributions from a few other Overseas Chapters and Batch Groups, we expect to complete fund-raising for the first 3 projects of Walk-a-Mile within the next few weeks. We are currently short of funding for the New Pavillion project. If you are interested in contributing to this project as an individual or group, pls register at https://walkamile.stcmloba.com/become-a-volunteer/

The OBA ExCo and the Walk-a-Mile Committee takes this opportunity to sincerely Thank all those who have contributed to this project and especially to all the benefactors of the College who stand by our Alma Mater throughout the years.

As the Warden Rev. Marc Bilimoria said in his address to the Walk-a-Mile committee earlier this week – ‘In the best of times and in the worst of times, Old Boys and the OBA have risen to the challenge and supported the school, throughout its history’.

Esto Perpetua!