Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka: Youth vocational training centre in Batticaloa handed over

With the handing over of the Red Cross Vocational Training Centre in Batticaloa, the youth in Batticaloa district now have more avenues to undergo job oriented skills development training.

Courses in subjects covering information technology, carpentry and garment manufacture among other sectors will commence in early 2010 with recruitment of 20 youth for each course.

The Centre, initiated by the Sri Lanka Red Cross Society (SLRCS) was completed at a cost of Rs. 84 million with financial support of Italian Red Cross.

At the handing over ceremony held on 3rd November, Mr. Pino Ungraro Head of Regional office for South East Asia of Italian Red Cross said that a previously unused, overgrown block of land has turned into a beautiful vocational training centre with support of Italian Red Cross paving the way for the youth to improve skills and find jobs. "Sri Lanka Red Cross has done a wonderful job to help the tsunami affected with support of Red Cross Movement Partners. The local volunteers, the real strength of the Red Cross are doing an excellence service for the community and the country. I hope this centre will contribute immensely for the betterment of people in Batticaloa". He also said.

National Secretary of SLRCS S. H. Nimal Kumar said that this centre will contribute towards the economic prosperity of the country and provision of more and more skilled labor to meet the current and future requirements of the area with the continuation of this development process. "In the midst of a conflict situation the Batticaloa district was badly hit by the tsunami. Our branch and volunteers were engaged in excellent humanitarian work. Together with Movement partners' support, recovery and reconstruction programmes were launched. One third of housing needs of tsunami affected was met by the Red Cross constructing or supporting in building houses. A large number of projects in health infrastructure, livelihood water and sanitation were completed. He further said.

Acting Chairman of the Batticaloa branch Sunil Dissanayake Country Coordinator of Italian Red Cross Ronarldo were also present at the handing over.