Sri Lanka

The video captures Tamil, Sinhalese, and Muslims coming together to compete in traditional games to help with reconciliation.

Promoting increased social cohesion, economic security, and community resiliency in the Eastern and Northern provinces.

Program Description

USAID's Office of Transition Initiatives (OTI) Reintegration and Stabilization in the East and the North (RISEN) program responds to the need for transitional assistance in areas of Sri Lanka emerging from conflict. In June 2009, the program, initially known as RISE, began in eastern Sri Lanka to support community-focused reintegration and target at-risk youth and ex-combatants as part of an integrated strategy to stabilize, transform, and develop the Eastern Province. With the military defeat of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam in the North, the return of internally displaced persons, and the start of the release process for ex-combatants, a window of opportunity opened for USAID to extend the program to the Northern Province, as RISEN, to support recovery and reintegration in both provinces.

Program Activities

RISEN's primary objective is the safe and effective reintegration of Sri Lankans into their communities, leading to economic recovery and reconstituting a healthy social and political fabric. This is followed by increasing civil engagement of conflict-affected communities with the rest of Sri Lankan society and government institutions. Material recovery, in combination with community engagement and mobilization, supplemented by support to critical service providers and social institutions, will create opportunities for the population to engage in the political and social dimensions of the post-war transition process. Strategically selected activities bring together populations from war-affected areas and other communities across Sri Lanka. These activities are helping to build networks, increase awareness and sensitivity to Sri Lanka's diverse circumstances, and reduce isolation. Such activities focus on—

  • identifying and executing community-prioritized projects;
  • encouraging livelihoods opportunities for at-risk youth and ex-combatants; and
  • strengthening institutional capabilities of local government and community-based organizations to provide necessary support for stabilization and reintegration efforts.

The USAID RISEN program provides in-kind assistance tailored to the specific needs and context of each community. All activities are designed on a rolling basis and are not predetermined. 

Last updated: October 29, 2014

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