By Hiran H.Senewiratne
In early 2011, Gnanam Education Trust (GET) was established as a non-profit organisation in memory of A.Y.S.Gnanam to provide education to the underprivileged. As its first initiative the Trust established a training Centre in Vavuniya for teaching English, Sinhala and IT Skills for people who face difficulties in spending on education. Many young students in the area have benefited from this exercise.
” Due to high demand among youth as its second initiative GET was established as Professional Skills Development Centre (PSDC) in Jaffna with state of the art classrooms to provide the same services in Jaffna, the Centre Manager Hylin Rajeevan Ratnam told the Island Financial Review .
She said that the GET is now registered under TVEC to provide NVQ Level courses to the students. Apart from that, the next intake of students for the Certificate in English Language would commence in February2022 and this would be followed by a Certificate Course in Sinhala.
“Our aim is to improve the students’ motivation and to help them to find suitable employment for them. Therefore, students of both genders are studying and we have also started a special programme for female self employed students to manage their day to day basic business accounts, ” she said.
In a bid to enhance students’ speaking skills a Toastmaster Speech Craft Training program too would be held. “One of our most sought after courses are the Certificate in Computer Applications (NVQ3level) and Hardware courses for students looking at future ICT sector employment. PSDC Center after studying the future emerging HR trends also conducts Area Tourist Guides programme with the assistance of Sri Lanka Northern Tourist Board.
“In a bid to get youth involved in the agriculture sector and add modern techniques to it, we will soon launch an Agri -Training programme as well.”
“One of the other key areas the trust focuses on is the Teacher Training programme on Activity based Zonal English (ABOE) which is being conducted with the assistance of Jaffna Zonal Education Department.”
“We also pay an incentive for those studying with us. Our Vision is to provide innovative, effective and integrated training for people in skills they need to enjoy the dignity that comes with employment, independence and self-reliance,” Ratnam said.
Administrative Assistant PDSC in Jaffna Vithusha Nilojan Deluxshan said that they have already produced around 100 qualified students and around 60 are currently following courses. There are around 15 volunteer teachers and we also get foreign volunteers from time to time.This institute was mainly initiated by Managing Director, Rhino Roofing Products Ltd Jey Gnanam. Furthermore, PSDC in Jaffna provides other educational services and opportunities as needed by the local society to arm them with the skills needed for securing gainful employment. This includes career guidance from the many stakeholders that have become associated with those that are in the companies started by its late founder.
Berendina bags Silver at the CA Sri Lanka 56th Annual Report Awards
Berendina Micro Investments Company Limited, better known as BMIC among its microfinance clientele and partners, won the Silver award at the 56th Annual Report Awards organized by the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Sri Lanka (CA Sri Lanka), under the category of Finance Companies and Leasing Companies (total assets up to Rs. 20 Billion). Over 70 companies, ranging from conglomerates, multinationals to non-profit organisations, and SMEs, were honoured at this year’s competition for their excellence in financial reporting. The gala event of this year held on 09th December 2021 at BMICH. Being the first Microfinance Company licensed by the Central Bank of Sri Lanka, BMIC is no stranger to this annual competition having won a prestigious Gold Award in 2017 and Merit Award in 2018.
The award from CA Sri Lanka is the fourth award to be won by BMIC during the financial year 2021, having won 3 international awards, namely, ‘The Best Microfinance Company in Sri Lanka’ and ‘The Best Agricultural Lending Company in Sri Lanka’ awards from the UK based Global Banking and Finance Review magazine as well as ‘Donor’s Choice Award’ at the international competition conducted by SCALE Green Creative Adaptation Awards in USA in 2021. Focused on poverty alleviation, BMIC as a Microfinance Institution (MFI) extends micro-credit facilities and enterprise development services that ensure long term sustainability and growth of business ventures of its clients, providing loans at the lowest interest rate compared to other MFIs in Sri Lanka. At present, BMIC manages a loan portfolio of over Rs. 3.1 billion and an annual turnover exceeding Rs. 900 million. It supports well over 70,000 microfinance clients through its 30 Branches in 11 districts. The CA award bestowed on BMIC is another testament to its commitment in continuously supporting its clients to overcome the obstacles during difficult times, while preserving its transparency in reporting, corporate governance, sustainability and social responsibility.
SLIC repositions Business Club insurance with more focus on SMEs
Sri Lanka Insurance last week announced repositioning of its Business Club insurance, a trade insurance policy which provides a comprehensive business insurance solution to fit for the diverse insurance need of small and Medium enterprises (SME).
“According to the Export Development Board of Sri Lanka SMEs are considered to be the backbone of the economy with a contribution up to 52% of the GDP. SMEs play a crucial role to battle the poverty in the country providing employment opportunities for the youth as the SMEs does not require capital than large firms. Further SMEs increase tax bases much quickly when compared to large firms,” an SLIC news release explained.
“Recognizing the importance and vital contribution made to the economy by SMEs, Sri Lanka Insurance went back to the drawing board to refine the “Business Club” comprehensive insurance solution to cater to the unique requirements of the businesses,” it said.”
“Therefor the insurance solution was developed to reinforce the success and safety of the businesses.”
The insurance plan will provide protection for any businesses be it retail, grocery store, supermarket, pharmacy or any other covering many perils inclusive of environmental dangers such as floods, cyclone, fire, lightning as well as other factors such as breaking and burglary, SLIC explained.
The release further said an array of main covers are available for businesses inclusive of fire and/or lightening, explosion, malicious damage, aircraft damage, earthquakes along with the free covers such as cost of removal of debris, loss of rental, architect, surveyors, consulting engineering fees, cost of alternative accommodation etc..
A range of additional covers are also available at an additional premium for businesses to choose. Money insurance during transit and while at premises, accidental breakage of glass cover, sign board cover, electronic equipment all risk cover are among the many additional covers offered.
Interested parties who’d like SLIC to assist in developing an insurance solution that covers the business risks can contact SLIC call center on 011 2 357 357.
German fruit and tea importers stresses importance of packaging
Jan Paul Bethke, a leading German importer of Sri Lankan fruits and tea, at a recent
EDB-organized event, urged Sri Lankan agri-product exporters to practice effective and superior packaging if they are to be successful in terms of capturing markets in Europe.
“If you package your product well, include a QR code (incorporating extensive details such as the farmer who grew products), and convey a personalized story, customers in advanced markets such as Germany and Europe would develop an affinity with your products”, Bethke noted.
He made these remarks at a Jan. 12 forum forum organized by the Sri Lanka Export Development Board (EDB) on packaging and value addition strategies to enhance Sri Lanka’s agri-product exports to Germany, an EDB news release said.
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