Make a Difference

Tamil Refugee Assistance Network

Raising the voice of the invisible


Refugees flee by conflict, struggling for better future

Where Are the Refugees?

According to the UNHCR, there are a total of 146,098 Sri Lanka Tamil refugees including asylum seekers in 56 countries, which are indicated on the map below in red and black spots are able to view the countries on this link. The black spots on the map are Malaysia, Indonesia, Bangkok, and India.

The Problem

Refugee camps cannot offer any prospect of an independent, stable life-when fleeing their country, most refugees avoid them and settle in large urban centers, mainly in developing countries. Contrary to a popular belief, most refugees do not live in camps or in Western countries but in cities of developing countries, where they face major challenges and often precarious living conditions.

Refugee-led organizations exist in most cities of the developing world, working to provide urgently needed services and support for the urban refugee community, including psychosocial support, and courses for out-of-school children.

Our Solution

Our solution is identifying the problem of refugees and internally displaced people. It is inputs on topics such as project management, fundraising, and communication with media, advocate and social networks, create an innovative income generate project, awareness and relationship building with NGOs in locally and internationally. The goal is to work collectively and use with these tools to continued support of the refugees and internally displaced people. This will bring positive outcome to these concern people.

We advocate for refugees

Through consistent advocacy efforts to change policies affecting refugees who are living the countries not party to the 1951Convention relating to neither the Status Refugees nor its 1967 Protocol. Where we advocate for education, health care, legal to work and resettlement and organize meeting in with policy makers, government authority and we coordinate joint advocacy strategies at the regional and UN levels. By changing one key policy, we can change thousands of lives.


In the long term

Our dream is create an International Tamil council, a federation of all these non-governmental organization (local & International), aid agencies, self-groups, local leadership, Tamil diaspora organizations and individual encouraged to resume traditional and habitual patterns of behavior, re-established social networks and community functioning at the grass root level. To maintain this level, the nursing home required resources from these organizations and individual that gave the concerned people accomplishment and fulfillment in the recovery process.



David Matas, Honorary Legal Counsel

David is an international human rights, immigration and refugee lawyer based in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. He was educated at the University of Manitoba, Princeton University and Oxford University.

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After graduation, he was a law clerk to the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Canada. Mr. Matas has been practicing international human rights, refugee and immigration law for the bulk of his professional career. He is also an author and advocate, having produced ten books on a wide variety of international human rights subjects. His work has received recognition through a number of awards. In 2010, he was inducted into the Order of Canada. That year he was also nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize.

Suzie de Luca, Director

Suzie holds a BA Double Honors in Political Studies and Philosophy from the University of Manitoba. Her passion for Human Rights and Social Justice began with her volunteer work at various non-profit organizations in Winnipeg.

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She has been a student activist and advocate of democratic rights through spearheading the ‘Vote Anyway’ campaign. She is the recipient of the Emerging Leader Award, the United Way Community Service Award, and has been nominated for the Premier’s Volunteer Service Award. Suzie is looking forward to continuing her passion for Human Rights with International Tamil Refugee Assistance Network NGO.

Sarah Teich, Director

Sarah Teich is an international human rights lawyer based in Toronto, Canada.
She is a legal advisor to the Canadian Security Research Group (CSRG) and the Canadian Coalition Against Terror (C-CAT), and a senior fellow at the Macdonald-Laurier Institute (MLI).

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She has worked on classified projects for the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague and led a Canadian National Security Working Group delivering policy submissions to the Parliament of Canada. Sarah is also on the editorial board of the International Counter-Terrorism Review Journal. Sarah has held research positions at the Global Justice Lab at the Munk School of Global Affairs (Toronto) and at the International Institute for Counter-Terrorism (ICT) in Israel. Her current research focuses on human rights and national security.

Sam M. Ratna, Director

Sam is graduated as a Civil Engineering from East London University, London, UK. Extensive experience over 25 years in construction management and engineering in construction industry.

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Based in Winnipeg, Manitoba Canada In the last few years he has travelled widely with David Matas, attending several meetings with UNHCR and government authority in Malaysia, Indonesia, Bangkok, India and other countries to address the plight of Sri Lankan Tamil refugees.

Advisory Council

Advisory Council

Irwin Cotler

Irwin Cotler, PC, OC, was the Member of Parliament for Mount Royal from 1999 to 2015. He served as the Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada from 2003 until the Liberal government of Paul Martin lost power following the 2006 federal election.

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Mr. Cotler was a professor of law at McGill University and the director of its Human Rights Program from 1973 until his election as a Member of Parliament in 1999 for the Liberal Party of Canada. He has also been a visiting professor at Harvard Law School, a Woodrow Wilson Fellow at Yale Law School and is the recipient of ten honorary doctorates. He was appointed in 1992 as an Officer of the Order of Canada.

Mr. Cotler has served on the Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs and its sub-Committee on Human Rights and International Development, as well as on the Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights. In 2000, he was appointed special advisor to the Minister of Foreign Affairs on the International Criminal Court.

Tom Denton

Tom Denton graduate in Arts from Acadia University and in Law from Dalhousie University, Halifax, Nova Scotia. Tom is a writer, speaker and consultant on immigration policy.

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Tom Denton has been since 2006, the Executive Director of the Administrative and Sponsorship work of Hospitality House Refugee Ministry of Winnipeg that historically has been a prolific private sponsor of refugees. It currently has 5,000 refugees under its active sponsorship. But Tom has been personally involved in the private sponsoring of refugees since the program began in 1979.

Sharry Aiken

Sharry Aiken is an associate professor and former associate dean at Queen’s University, Faculty of Law in Kingston, Ontario. Her teaching portfolio includes international refugee law, international human rights law, and other public law courses.

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Her current research engages with the complexities and challenges posed by immigration and border security measures as well as the impact of these measures on asylum seekers, refugees and the communities they have established in Canada. A past president of the Canadian Council for Refugees, Prof. Aiken was co-chair of CCR’s Legal Affairs Committee from 1998 to 2016 and served as pro bono counsel in many precedent-setting cases before the Supreme Court of Canada. As a former refugee lawyer for many years, Prof. Aiken’s practice brought her into contact with dozens of asylum seekers from Sri Lanka, affording a very distinct window in the country and the conditions that have generated ongoing flows of Tamil refugees. She remains an active member of CCR’s Legal Affairs Committee; while currently serving as Co-Chair of the Canadian Centre for International Justice and a member of the Advisory Council of the Sri Lanka Campaign for Peace and Justice.

Student Group

Student Group

Andrew Vanderhorst

Andrew Vanderhorst is currently completing his honors degree major in political science and minor in history with York University in Toronto, Ontario. Andrew is the recipient of the York International Mobility Award and was a member of the Model United Nations at York University.

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Andrew currently resides in Winnipeg, finishing his degree through the University of Manitoba and holds a position with the Manitoba Young Liberals as VP Policy. he has been actively engaged and working to organize awareness for I-TRAN with hopes of aiding in the process of resettling Tamil refugees seeking asylum from Sri Lanka

Kobra Rahini

Kobra Rahimi holds a Bachelor degree in Criminal Justice from the University of Winnipeg and she is currently in her second year of Law student at the University of Manitoba with an interest in Immigration and refugee law.

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Having been born and raised at a refugee camp herself, Kobra is very passionate in advocating for the safety and rights of all refugees and expertise as a law student to work with I-TRAN to be a voice for Tamil Refugees worldwide

Our Vision

Our vision is to continue to engage with those we meet to promote durable solutions for the Tamil refugee population; we are focused specifically on solutions incorporating resettlement, repatriation and local integration.

Our Mission

International Tamil Refugees Assistance Network (I-TRAN) is a non-governmental organization that has been actively involved in helping refugees who have been displaced by violence, conflict and persecution to survive, recover and rebuild their lives. In addition to assisting Tamil refugees, our mission is to raise awareness of and advocate for active resolutions to the ongoing civil and humanitarian crisis.


I-TRAN, as an organization will work with host countries to better understand asylum claimants’ protection needs within the Geneva Convention and the International norm of protection. We will solicit international NGO’s support to resolve single or collective asylum claims wherever applicable. Action will be taken immediately within the limits of our resources or help will be sought from other refugee activist or organization. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights will be strictly adhered to, during the process of our support to any intervention. Our constitution prohibits any racial, religious, political and national discrimination within the refugees around the world.



I-TRAN for Refugees

Guided by Tamil values and experience, I-TRAN is working to address the global Tamil refugee crisis. We protect Tamil refugees throughout the world and displaced persons in home land, helping them to build new lives in safety and with dignity.

Why? Because as long as there are still places where it is a crime to be who you are, we have a mandate to be who we are

Join us today. Sign up to learn how you can make a difference on one of the most urgent issues of our time. If you would like to know more about our action, go to our website:

Contact Form

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Thanks in advance for your donation
This will help us our first project for displaced people and advocate for Tamil refugees in developing countries

You can make a donation either with your credit card, using the paypal button, or by check at the attention of I-TRAN at the below address

Subject: I-TRAN Fund

Unit C-1111 Henderson Hwy
Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada R2G 1L4