USAID/Sri Lanka Newsletter - May 2018

Tuesday, May 8, 2018

YouLead sign partnership with World University Services Canada

Dear Reader,

This is an overview of some of the most significant milestones the American people have supported through USAID in Sri Lanka, during the first quarter of 2018. We hope that these demonstrate the diversity and the scope of USAID-supported activities in Sri Lanka and recognize stakeholder efforts that made all this possible.

YouLead Partners with Private, State and Development Sectors on Market-Driven Jobs for Sri Lanka’s Youth

USAID’s YouLead program signed partnerships with  Microsoft Sri Lanka, Regional Development Bank (RDB) the World University Services Canada (WUSC) and financial institutions, including micro-and community finance groups, and commercial and public-sector banks. YouLead is working to align young people with existing jobs through improved vocational education and enhanced opportunities for self-employment. Read More

YouLead Expands to Central Province

Visiting U.S. Department of State Deputy Assistant Secretary for South and Central Asian Affairs, Daniel Rosenblum opened a YouLead office in Kandy
Visiting U.S. Department of State Deputy Assistant Secretary for South and Central Asian Affairs, Daniel Rosenblum, opened a YouLead office in Kandy

Visiting U.S. Department of State Deputy Assistant Secretary for South and Central Asian Affairs, Daniel Rosenblum opened a YouLead office in Kandy in February 2018. This regional office in Kandy, located within the Chamber of Commerce office, will work closely with Chamber members as well as public and private vocational training institutes in the region to develop partnerships and career development opportunities to support youth employment in the Central Province. Read More

Home-grown Solutions to Bridge the Skills Gap

In collaboration with its partner Arizona State University (ASU), YouLead completed classroom training for “Master Teacher” candidates from the MSDVT in January. This was the second of a three-part ASU-certified course to develop a cadre of technical and vocational education teachers from the Ministry. Read More

Biz+ supports a local business in the East to expand its poultry business
Biz+ supports a local business in the East to expand its poultry business
USAID Sri Lanka

Biz+ Partners with Local Business in the East to Expand Commercial Poultry Production

USAID’s BIZ+ initiative signed a partnership with K-Hill Gaya Lanka (Pvt.) Ltd. in January to expand its poultry breeding facility in Batticaloa.  Biz+ has been providing financial, technical and managerial assistance to more than 50 small scale local businesses across Sri Lanka since 2012.  Read More

Pathways to Leadership for Women Lawyers

Female Lawyers address the audience during the panel discussion
Female Lawyers address the audience during the panel discussion
Chemonics

In March, USAID-supported Coherent, Open, Responsive, Effective Justice (CORE Justice) initiative hosted a panel discussion in Colombo for an audience of one hundred lawyers and law students to celebrate International Women's Day. The event discussed the challenges women faced in the legal profession and strategies to overcome them. Working to promote the rule of law in Sri Lanka, CORE Justice emphasizes support to diverse career pathways for women attorneys and expansion of professional leadership roles for women. Read More

USAID Celebrations for International Water Day

Local communities in the East will now have access to clean water all year round
Local communities in the East will now have access to clean water all year round

On March 27, more than 70 participants from leading private, public, and civil society organizations gathered to work collaboratively on water issues as part of an International Water Day event organized with support from USAID. The focus areas were disaster risk reduction, water resource management and governance, water and sanitation, and water-related health issues like Chronic Kidney Disease.  Participants discussed challenges, identified possible solutions, and formed partnerships based on common areas of interest.  Read More

USAID’s Capacity Building Efforts

USAID Supports Sri Lankan Parliamentarian Staff with an Orientation Workshop

In January, USAID-funded Strengthening Democratic Governance and Accountability project (SDGAP) held a one-day workshop for 50 new staff of the Parliamentarian Secretariat.  Participants learned about parliamentary procedures and management practices.  The workshop also aimed to create a greater understanding and appreciation of the role of parliamentarians in promoting good governance and democratic values. To advance good governance reforms in Sri Lanka, USAID supports the strengthening of country systems and processes under USAID’s SDGAP project. 

Training for Journalists in Election Reporting

In January, USAID-supported Improved Election Management Program (IEMP) organized a two-day media training on principles of election reporting for journalists from across the country.  Media plays an important role in influencing political discourse during elections.  The training focused on regulating hate speech in elections and highlighted principles of gender sensitive reporting. USAID’s IEMP is providing support to administer credible and inclusive elections in Sri Lanka and improve the content and efficacy of voter education programs.

USAID’s Impact

USAID Trains Local Women Leaders to Take Advantage of the Women’s Quota

In 2017, the Government of Sri Lanka instituted historic reforms to increase women’s representation in local government by mandating a 25 percent women’s quota. In advance of the February 2018 local government elections, USAID-supported initiatives worked with the Women’s Caucus of the Parliament, and the Ministries for Local Government and Women and Children’s Affairs to raise awareness of the quota and train approximately 2,400 local women leaders to take advantage of it.  Following the elections women’s representation in local government positions increased from 2 percent to 23 percent.

Sri Lanka's Ministry of Finance Receives South Asia Innovation Award

At the Fifth South Asia Regional Public Procurement Conference held in New Delhi in February, a case story on Sri Lankan Public Financial Management reforms submitted by the Department of Public Finance of the Ministry of Finance and Mass Media won the South Asia Procurement Innovation Award. The Country Case Story submitted by the Department beat out 87 other case stories from government and public sector organizations, universities, and research institutions.  USAID’s Short-Term Assistance to Improve Public Financial Management Reform (STAIR) project provided technical assistance to the Department of Public Finance to develop a "Guide to Project Management and Contract Management,” and provided related training which helped the Department to win this prestigious award for the second consecutive year.

From the Field

Padmalatha ensures that a community has clea drinking water 2
Padmalatha ensures that a community has clea drinking water 2
World Vision

It takes one strong woman to ensure a community has clean drinking water

Sixty-seven year old J.A. Padmalatha, in Yathdehiwatta happily climbs the mountain every morning to check the level of chlorine in the water treatment unit to ensure that the water is safe for the villagers to consume.  Before USAID support provided them with a water tank and a chlorination unit, the water they drank had high bacteria content. Thanks to people like Padmalatha, the village can now manage the purification of their own water.
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Last updated: May 15, 2018

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