Faculty and students of SLIIT rally for a worthy cause

Saturday, 1 March 2014 07:30 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

Thousands of students, faculty and administrative staff from SLIIT rallied together to save lives of residents in the village of Mahavilachiya. The Student Interactive Society (SIS) of SLIIT organised a charity parade, themed ‘Walk for Water’ to raise funds to install a water purifying system at the Padavi Sripura Hospital in Mahavilachiya, a village in the North Central Province of Sri Lanka. To ensure all parties agree on the installation and after services of the water purifier system, an MOU was signed recently by Dr. Chinthaka Wijewardena of the Padavi Sripura Hospital and Shamendra Pieris of the Water Board. At the MOU signing, the funds collected from the walk were handed to Dr. Chinthaka Wijewardena by Prof. Lalith Gamage, President and CEO of SLIIT. As a part of phase one in the project, along with the charity parade, a feasibility study and pre-test was done to determine the kind of membrane needed to be installed to the filter. Additionally, a plan was developed to dispose the waste water produced from the filtering process. With support of the community around the hospital, the Water Board and humanitarian organisation‘Surakimu Lakmau,’ the first phase of the project has been completed. For the past 20 years, the North Central Province has been the main target ground for the Chronic Kidney Disease of Unknown Etilogy (CKDu). The chronic disease is caused due to the excess presence of heavy metals and other chemical residues in the underwater wells and reservoirs making all the drinking water sources in the area impure. “Currently in Sri Lanka this is the most affecting disease. There are no specific solutions to clean the water out of the heavy metal and toxic elements. Therefore we asked the student Interactive Society of SLIIT to have a fund raising program to get this topic forward and help us to install a water purifying unit in the Mahavilachiya area,” said Susantha Paranagama, Secretary of Surakimu Lakmav. “At SLIIT, we not only focus on academics, but also on extracurricular activities, which will enable students to develop their talents and soft skills. Expanding our curriculum, we have now introduced volunteering and a soft subject, which includes drama and public speaking. I take this opportunity to recognise the fine gesture of the student Interactive Society for organising the first-ever SLIIT walk. The walk was for a good cause and I am glad that the sufficient amount of funds was raised,” noted Professor Lalith Gamage, President and CEO of SLIIT. Thanking Professor Gamage and the faculty of SLIIT, Kasun Hapuarachchi, President of the Student Interactive Society, stated: “I thank Susantha Paranagama, the Secretary of Surakimu Lakmav, and Dr. Chinthaka Wijewardena for giving us a chance to work with them to make a difference in the lives of many people. I extend my sincere gratitude to all my brothers and sisters for their help during this entire process. I hope we can continue to achieve more with these projects and create an impact in our society.”