Damrivi has pioneered professional training in psychological counselling with Buddhist insights in Sri Lanka. Ever since its inception in 2004 Damrivi has developed and conducted a number of Certificate and Diploma courses in psychological counselling. Currently Damrivi is concluding its seventh course and is in the process of registering students for its eighth course.
Damrivi is an organization of academics and professionals for social, economic and spiritual developments through Buddhist insights and is an organization registered under the Tertiary and Vocational Training Commission ( TVTC) of Sri Lanka.
The Course aims at training professional counsellors who will be able to integrate western psychological and psychiatric therapies and tools with local cultural and religious values. The trainees are selected subject to a minimum qualification of GCE A/L and a stringent interview to determine their suitability for the purpose. Buddhist monks and nuns and social workers who are compelled to counsel due to their nature of occupation however without formal training are given a special place in the selection process. The evaluations are in the form of theory and practical Examinations.
The 12 month course contains a total of 300 hours including theory and practicals , roll plays and field Placements. It covers Fundamentals in Counselling, Psychological Disorders and Social aspects of well being, counselling arenas, professional /ethical issues in counselling, counselling skills and application of Buddhist insights, analyses, parables, stories and practices including meditation workshops. In addition to the 12 months , there will be internship of 6 months in the Damrivi counselling centre situated at Hevelock Town, Colombo 5.
Currently over 150 have passed out as Counsellors which include monks and nuns, social workers, professionals such as doctors, lawyers, accountants, teachers, human resource specialists, and members of the civil security force of Sri Lanka. A cross section of society follows these courses conducted in Sinhala, from Vavuniya to Tissamaharama.
A number of students who are members of the civil security force attended the courses for the last few years who travel once a week all the way from North and East of the country hoping to participate in the rehabilitation of the war torn area.
These counsellors who pass out are engaged by Damrivi for its island wide counselling activities and in its counselling centre situated at Isipathana Mawatha, Colombo 5 , which renders a yeoman service free of charge to all irrespective of class , creed or race.
The course is conducted under the direction of its Chairman, Professor Asanga Tilakaratne , professor of Buddhist Studies of the University of Colombo. The course is coordinated by Mr. Suranga Amarakoon, the senior counsellor of Damrvi who provides counselling services on 'Sith Gimanhala', the popular live counselling service conducted by Derana TV. You may contact Mr. Suranga Amarakoon on 011-3117384 for more details.