About us

The NTT is an independent, philanthropic and indigenous organization

/About us

The Neelan Tiruchelvam Trust (NTT) was established in 2001, two years after the assassination of Dr. Neelan Tiruchelvam, and is devoted to sustaining his intellectual legacy as a peacemaker, legislator, constitutional lawyer and institution builder.
As an independent, indigenous and philanthropic grant making organization, the NTT is well positioned to understanding the issues surrounding the various communities that make up the fabric that is Sri Lanka, while addressing them not only in a country specific manner, but also in a regional and even community specific manner. With this expertise as its forte, the NTT aims to support sustainable measures that are inclusive, pluralistic, and uphold the sanctity of life.

The Trust focuses on six thematic areas, and has successfully implemented projects with over 110 grantees across the country. 

The Trust is spearheaded by a Board of Trustees, the members of which function in an honorary capacity, giving leadership and guidance to the workings of the establishment.

NTT is the only indigenous grant maker in Sri Lanka, combining human rights and peace building initiatives throughout the country. As an independent and autonomous local organization, NTT has the opportunity to work more flexibly with individuals and communities at various levels in society, in a variety of geographical settings, on a wide array of issues. Given it’s expertise and networks, the NTT is able to provide additional support to target groups which goes well beyond financial assistance and grants.

NTT is registered as a Trust under Section 114 of the Trust Ordinance (Chapter 87) under Gazette Notification No:1166/19 of 11th January 2001 of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka and by Trust Deed No: 48.

Board of Trustees: The Trust is governed by a volunteer Board of Trustees, who collectively steer the organization’s policy making through the Programme Committee and the Finance & Investment Committee.

Programme Committee (PC): The PC is responsible for the approval of grants provided by NTT. It is made up of 3 Trustees, the Executive Director and the Manager, Programmes and Grants.

Finance and Investment Committee (FIC): The FIC, comprising 4 Trustees, together with the Executive Director and the Manager, Finance and Investments, is responsible for financial oversight and monitoring of the finances of the Trust. The FIC meets every two months.

Management team: The management team consists of the Executive Director, responsible for overall management and strategic leadership of the Trust; the Programme Manager; and the Manager, Finance and Investments.

The members of the Board of Trustees as well as the staff at NTT reflect diversity in terms of ethnic, linguistic, religious and gender parameters. This diversity enables the Trust to draw upon a variety of perspectives in it’s day to day functionality.

NTT works with communities of diverse ethnic, linguistic and religious groups, as well as on projects that specifically focus on marginalized groups, while fostering respect for diversity and pluralism throughout.

Ernst & Young,
Chartered Accountants,
PO Box 101,

Our Vision

The establishment and protection of a just, equitable and peaceful society.

Our Mission

To collectively promote peace, reconciliation and human rights, sharing responsibility, resources and risks through strategic partnerships with civil society, public sector, business community, diaspora, academia and donors.

Core Values

In continuing Dr. Tiruchelvam’s legacy and upholding the values upon which the Trust was founded during the 2009 – 2012 strategic planning process, NTT formulated a set of core values which will serve as the guiding principle in all aspects of the work of the Trust.

Right to Life

Upholding the sanctity of life.

Social Transformation

Advocating the value of education, learning and scholarship as a means of self-reflection and social transformation.


Embracing the richness of diversity and celebrating our common humanity.

Right to Life

Upholding the sanctity of life.

Institution Building

Facilitating institution building to promote participatory democracy, peace, human rights, transparency and accountability.

Non-violent Transformation

Promoting non-violence and justice in resolving the conflict through healing and the restoration of relationships, understanding, trust and confidence.


Raising sensitivity towards issues relating to peace and human rights, and thereby initiating an active and well-informed society.


Devising respectful means of communication to express dissent as well as consent on socially, politically, economically and culturally sensitive issues without compromising principles.


Mediating and networking between and among local and international institutions to create space for sharing experiences, knowledge, wisdom and resources.


Raising and allocating resources within NTT’s priority areas ethically and effectively being cognizant of the socio-economic, and political trends within Sri Lanka, the region and globally.