Feb 20 (IL) As Sri Lanka copes with the worst natural tragedy in recorded history, the country cannot languish in despair and desperation. Instead, in a spirit of hope, we need to look positively at the solution, at relief and reconciliation, at reconstruction and rebuilding.

As part of this positive process, the Daily Mirror is offering its services for the rehabilitation and rebuilding of the lives of tsunami-devastated children. With the sea invasion catastrophe leaving thousands of children dead, and hundreds of others without parents, the Daily Mirror is launching a mercy mission to provide some of these children with a new life. These children, destitute and desperate in makeshift refugee camps would need care and compassion. This mission could be undertaken by an individual, a company or a chamber of companies.

If you are ready and willing to do that as part of a national mission, to build a better nation and a better tomorrow, you could volunteer to sponsor the provision of basic needs including food, healthcare and education of a child whose parents or guardians are too poor now to provide these. This is indirect adoption, otherwise known as foster parenting.

Direct adoption will involve a court process for some months. Sponsorship or indirect adoption would mean a commitment, not just for a few months but for many years.

The Daily Mirror will coordinate and facilitate this process, to ensure to the extent possible that the money you give is fully utilised for the child's well-being and welfare. The Daily Mirror will work in association with the National Child Protection Authority (NCPA) and the Department of Probation and Childcare to sustain this mercy mission for the next generation.

All sponsorship funds will be handled by the NCPA. UNICEF and other agencies confirm that at least one third of the victims of the December 26 carnage and mayhem were children. They were too young to understand the wrath of the monstrous waves and too small to escape. Sri Lanka's children, the country's greatest treasure for tomorrow, lie battered and helpless. This devastated country has done so much for you. What are you ready to give in return?

For further details, please write to the Editor of the Daily Mirror, No. 8 Hunupitiya Cross Road, Colombo 02. Please mention 'Sponsorship of child' on the top left hand corner of the envelope.

You could send us your offer even on fax nos: 5330811 or 2423258 or email: After a discussion with you, we will channel your offer to the NCPA