Sri Lankan President Chandrika Kumaratunga said she and her fellow citizens felt solidarity with those affected.Please understand that the effective exchange rate is roughly 1:10, so this would cost them $250,000 in local buying power. I know it doesn't really make sense for Sri Lanka to offer the U.S. money, not with more than 30,000 dead from the tsunami and close to a million of their own people still homeless, almost all of whom are still living in temporary housing (tents, or tin houses). And yet, it's such a gracious gesture that I just want to cheer and say, "Well done!"
"Having experienced the fury of nature ourselves during the December 26 tsunami, the people of Sri Lanka and I fully empathize with you at this hour of national grief," she said in a message to the U.S.
And while the small island nation is still recovering from the tsunami disaster, it also pledged $25,000 to the American Red Cross, the AP reported.
And closer to home, I've pleased to note that my own Roosevelt University is welcoming hurricane-affected undergrad and graduate students, waiving enrollment fees, promising to do what they can to offer financial aid, and hopefully offer housing as well. It's not as splendid as Franklin College offering free admission and tuition, but at least they're doing something. I'm very glad.
Mills is offering undergrad women fall semester admission with non-matriculated status -- they don't say anything about it being free, so I'm not sure exactly what that phrasing means.