The Perera Family
The KSTCP is run by Dudley Perera and his family. Dudley, a native of Kosgoda, has been involved with turtle conservation in area since 1988. He began working with turtles straight out of school, funding the project with his own money. He spent 5 years developing the project before winning a scholarship in 1993 to study conservation of sea animals in South Korea, during which he left the KSTCP in the care of his friends and family.
After studying for 3 years he then stayed on in South Korea for a further 3 years working in a factory to earn enough money to enable him to come back to Sri Lanka in 1999 and build a house.
He was able to invest money in the KSTCP and the future of turtles in the area as well as supporting his new family. Shortly after his return to Kosgoda, Dudley married his school sweet-heart Psantha. The couple now have two beautiful children, Promeda, born in 2001 and Dulan, born in 2003.
Dudley remains passionate about the welfare and future of turtles in Sri Lanka and passing his knowledge and enthusiasm onto locals and visitors alike.
Post-tsunami, Dudley still flies the flag for turtle conservation in Kosgoda but has twinned this with a desire to help his villagers in community projects. According to Dudley:
"I feel it is very important to help my friends, family and neighbours after the tsunami but we also must not forget about the animals and their future"