As the activist and the strength behind her husband Dr. A T Ariyaratne, the founder of the Sarvodaya Shramadana Movement she influenced in the spreading of the Sarvodaya Village Reawakening programme to 15,000 villages.
Mrs. Ariyaratne was the key person in the establishment of Sarvodaya Suwasetha as the social welfare unit of the larger Sarvodaya Movement. The Sarvodaya Suwasetha Nutrition Centre was established in 1975 with two severely malnourished infants. Now there are often at least 30 such severely malnourished children receiving nutrition and care in this centre. Orphaned, destitute or abandoned infants and children are receiving residential care and rehabilitation in 09 Sarvodaya Suwasetha Children’s Homes located in all parts of the island including the war affected North Central province.
Since 1975 to date Mrs Ariyaratne has played a pivotal role in providing love, care and protection to over 25,000 destitute and orphaned children, caring for hundreds of senior citizens by establishing elders homes, empowering hundreds and thousands of children, women and adults with special needs through empowerment and skills development programmes.