Home / HR/ Canada supports women’s rights organisations in Sri Lanka

Canada supports women’s rights organisations in Sri Lanka

Comments / {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}} Views / Wednesday, 8 January 2020 00:00

High Commissioner McKinnon and Colombo Mayor Rosy Senanayake

Ramani Jayasundera (Asia Foundation), Daniel Joly (High Commission of Canada) & Aneesa Firthous (IWARE))

 some members of the 27 WRO's

Victoria Coakley (AusHC), Samadhani Kiriwandeniya and Dharshana Perera (MFA)

The High Commission of Canada to Sri Lanka together with the Asia Foundation launched their flagship development initiative in Sri Lanka named ‘Women’s Voice and Leadership’ (WVL). This launch took place on 17 December at the official residence of the Canadian High Commissioner with over seventy participants representing other missions, development partners, women’s rights organisations, civil society organisations, Government and non-governmental participants.  

In Sri Lanka, the Asia Foundation will implement the WVL project with a CA$3-million contribution from Global Affairs Canada for the period from 2019-2023. Addressing the gathering at the launch, the High Commissioner to Canada in Sri Lanka David McKinnon said, “Canada firmly believes that promoting gender equality and empowering women and girls is the most effective approach to building a more peaceful, inclusive and a prosperous world.” The WVL will contribute to Canada’s foreign policy objective of promoting reconciliation in Sri Lanka. This project would also build upon Canada’s previous support to Sri Lankan women’s rights organisations (WROs). 27 WROs representing all provinces of Sri Lanka have been shortlisted to receive funding through a competitive selection process.

Sri Lanka has achieved notable gains in women’s empowerment and gender equity. Yet women’s lives are hindered by continuing challenges. The WVL is unique in its design where the project’s goal is to support the capacity and activities of Sri Lankan local WROs and movements seeking to empower women and girls. Its focus is not thematic but one of supporting WROs to make their own choices about what they want to do in order to advance women’s and girls’ rights and achieve greater gender equality. “This is indeed a special day for us. We have worked for nearly a year setting in place everything that is needed for the project. We have been in touch with a number of women’s organisations, some of which are here today, and now we are ready to start work. We look forward to the next 4 years where we will have a chance to support the valuable work done by women’s organisations in Sri Lanka and contribute to women’s empowerment,” said Asia Foundation Country Representative in Sri Lanka Dinesha de Silva Wikramanayake.

Canada initiated Women’s Voice and Leadership as a response to a globally recognised gap in predictable, long-term funding and support to women’s rights organisations and movements around the world. The WVL project in Sri Lanka is one of 32 such projects around the world. In Asia, there are also projects in Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Indonesia, Myanmar, and Pakistan. This project supports Canada’s overarching objective of reducing poverty and building a more inclusive, peaceful and prosperous world through the promotion of gender equality and the empowerment of women and girls. This project will be part of the five-year, CAD 150-million Canadian global commitment to WVL program.

Share This Article

Facebook Twitter


1. All comments will be moderated by the Daily FT Web Editor.

2. Comments that are abusive, obscene, incendiary, defamatory or irrelevant will not be published.

3. We may remove hyperlinks within comments.

4. Kindly use a genuine email ID and provide your name.

5. Spamming the comments section under different user names may result in being blacklisted.


Today's Columnists

China’s virus shutdown will hurt growth abroad

Friday, 28 February 2020

Many affluent Chinese fearful of being infected by the coronavirus and being quarantined by the State are staying home. Many companies and countries around the world are linked to the Chinese economy, which is likely to have far-reaching consequences

The reality of the system

Friday, 28 February 2020

The whole system of the country which has been crumbling is now on the verge of near collapse. The political regime, bureaucracy, intellectuals and the society in general did not have a sufficiently developed political imagination to understand the n

Writing on the wall

Thursday, 27 February 2020

Quick! Pick between reading this and opting to do something that really makes you happy. I suspect 99% of you would be more fulfilled getting to work half-an-hour earlier, going to market or school sooner than later, or simply goofing off at home or

Geneva: Right cause, wrong tactics

Thursday, 27 February 2020

The Geneva 2015 resolution is a hidden tripwire linked to a maze of claymore mines, some buried, some planted in ditches, others nested in trees. When this article appears, Sri Lanka may have nudged that tripwire. There was another, smarter, safer wa

Columnists More