“A body at rest wants to stay at rest. It takes energy to overcome inertia.” Velauther, known to his friends as Aruna, is a believer in this law of physics. “The only thing that will jumpstart that energy and get it going is attitude. Attitude is a little thing that makes a big difference.”
Aruna and Thilaka come from Sri Lanka, an island just south of India. In 1986, with dreams of a better and safer life, Aruna left his job as a railway construction inspector to work in the Sultanate of Oman. It was the beginning of almost five years of painful separation from his family. Next, he went to the U.K. to continue his studies, and then on to Canada. Thilaka, who had been working as a senior officer at the Department of Inland Revenue in Sri Lanka, brought the children to Canada, reuniting the family in 1991.
Hoping to fulfill the traditional dream of a good job, Aruna attended George Brown College in Toronto, graduating with honors in construction engineering. He put a lot of time, energy, and effort into excelling in his field, but even with the years of education and experience he was unable to find work. In 1992, the Arunasalams and their three young sons, Aravin, Anathan, and Anu, were living in a tiny bachelor apartment. Aruna was working 80 to 90 hours a week as a gas station attendant and delivering newspapers, while Thilaka helped with the paper route and went to school full time. They were barely making enough to survive when a chance encounter led them to an opportunity to start their own business and change their future.
Because of the challenges they faced when trying to build careers in traditional businesses, they were excited to finally forge their own path as entrepreneurs. They had never been afraid of hard work, and now they were able to apply that energy to their own business, and it grew quickly. Today the Arunasalams enjoy the flexibility to spend time together with their four sons (including their youngest, Abiraj) while maintaining the steady growth of their business.
As they’ve experienced their own success, they make a point to give back to their local community of Scarborough, especially in their support of Easter Seals Ontario. Aruna and Thilaka appreciate the fact that Easter Seals provides programs that support the health and well-being of children and returning veterans, both of whom are so richly deserving.
The Arunasalams believe that it was their positive attitude along with their willingness to work hard that gave them the jump start they needed, and helped them build a very successful business. Today as they travel the globe for their business they have found that anyone could touch the heart and soul of anybody, simply by helping them become what they want to be.