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History of Lanka Shishyadhara Society.
The establishment of Lanka Shishyadhara Society was the result of the untiring effort put in by Mohandiram B.M.F.Jayaratne, the then Chief Clerk of the Indian National Bank, Dr. J.P.C.Chandrasena, Professor of Chemistry of the all Ceylon Educational Institute - Predecessor of University of Ceylon and Ayur. Dr. R.J.F.Vaidyakularatne, a Physician of repute of Thotalanga, Colombo, in 1920. The inaugural meeting was held on 31st July 1920 at Jinaraja School Kollupitiya. The sole motive of the Society was to help the poor but intelligent children to acquire this end it was decided to set up a fund with a target of Rs. 100,000/- and utilize the interest derived from it to help the needy students to achieve their goals. The fund was fired off with an initial contribution of Rs.50/= by Mr. K. C. Fernando of Veyangoda who was attached to the Ceylon Government Railway as a Telecommunication Inspector.

The intended target of the fund was not realized during the short period up the end of 2nd world war. The Society was now registered with the Register of Societies as No. 25 on 1st February 1935. Hon George E de Silva the then Minister of Health was the first Patron of the Society. Attorney Thimothy de Silva was the President from 1920 - 1935. He was succeeded by Dr.H.M.Peiris, Superintendent of Colombo Maternity Hospital, who held the post from 1936 to 1944. Professor P.B.Fernando of the Faculty of Medicine of the University of Ceylon, was the president from 1945 to 1958. He was followed by professor K. Rajasuriya of the Faculty of Medicine, University of Ceylon who held the post of President till 1964. Then B.C.F.Jayaratna Advocate took over the Presidency and held it till 1986. Wing Commander Noel Fernando became President in 1987 and carried on till 2000. In 2001 we had our first lady President Ms. Yamuna Balasuriya, a leading Attorney who continues to be our President.

By the time we celebrated our 40th anniversary in 1960 our Trust Fund had reached only Rs. 27,869,47/= even though we had set a target of Rs.100,000/= and helped 33 scholars to complete their higher education and take their place as Doctors, Engineers, Lawyers, Accountants and so on in the society. At the end of Mr. B. C. F. Jayaratne's tenure of Office the Trust Fund stood at Rs. 68,000/=. Then came the golden period under Wing Commander Noel Fernando who set up a target of Five Million Rupees and set out to achieve it by means of "Memorial Scholarships" – donations of Rs.10,000/= or more and other membership contribution.By 1995 Trust Fund had risen to Rs.2,000,000/= over 150 Scholars had received our support and completed their studies and achieved their life ambition of becoming Doctors, Engineers, and Lawyers. A further 73 Scholars were receiving aid in 1995.The Trust Fund has reached a figure of Rs.4,342,660/= in 2002, and the members of Scholars ecipients stood at 110.
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