Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Women's Education Society of Ceylon

The genesis of Buddhist women's education in modern Sri Lanka goes back to March 24, 1889, when a group of women gathered at the Colombo headquarters of the Buddhist Theosophical Society. The BTS had been formed nine years before at the behest of Madame Helena Petrovna and Colonel Henry Steele Olcott.

It was unprecedented in the colony for women to gather in this manner, like men, to discuss matters of import - which in this case was the furtherance of education for Sinhalese women. The initiative seems to have been taken by Ms O. L. G. A. Weerakoon, who by all accounts was a livewire.

A week later, on March 30, an expanded group met again at the same location, and formed the Women's Education Society of Ceylon (Nari-shiksa-dhana Samagama), to promote the education of Buddhist women.

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