From left: Women in Management Award Chairperson and ExCo Secretary Kushlani Perera, Keells Food Non Executive Director Shehara De Silva, Women in Work International Finance Corporation (member of World Bank) Corporate Governance Officer Lopa Rahaman, National Youth Service Council Chairman Theshara Jayasinghe and Women in Management Founder and Chairperson Dr. Sulochana Segera at the New Generation Award 2020 press launch – Pic by Ruwan Walpola
- Women in Management and Youth National Services Council partner to empower leaders of tomorrow
By Safna Malik
Women in Mana-gement (WIM) and the Youth National Services Council (YNSC) this week unveiled a ground breaking initiative ‘New Generation Award 2020’ under the theme of ‘’Leaders of Tomorrow.” Bringing out young talent to the spotlight, the New Generation Awards aim to recognise young leaders who have been trendsetters in their respective sectors from innovations to leadership skills.
Introducing the New Generation Awards 2020, WIM Founder Dr. Sulochana Segera point out, “Its high time Sri Lanka recognises youth leadership and also it’s time for the youth to take responsibility for their own future. As a nation, we have built a dependency mindset in youth and it has resulted with them by depending on elders and the government for their future.”
“This is the main reason as to why WIM initiated NG Awards to build their own role models for their future.”
Dr Sulochana explained it would not be an ordinary award ceremony looking for a niche sector, that it’s an initiative which will create a positive impact among youngsters in Sri Lanka. She said that they have brought this concept up considering and valuing young leadership in Sri Lanka. NYSC Chairman Theshara Jayasinghe also joined the media briefing to express his views on New Generation Awards 2020 as a governmental institution stepping together with a private institution for the first time reward and value the hard-working contribution of Sri Lankan youth.
“The National Youth Services Council, as the apex body in youth development in Sri Lanka, deeply appreciates the interests and commitment displayed by Women in Management in organising New Generation Awards for the youth of Sri Lanka.”
“The NYSC has partnered with WIM, enthusiastically extending support to initiatives of this nature, founded by non-governmental actors in recognising youth talent and contributing towards Youth Empowerment with goal harnessing the potential of future leaders.”
NYSC Chairman said nomination will be open from 1 August to 5 September. Participants who are willing to take part in this tremendous event should visit www.womeninmanagementawards.org and the Gala event will be held on the 24 November at Shangri-La hotel. Jayasinghe said this year’s panel of judges is comprised of experienced experts of the various sectors including NYSC Chairman, Triad Advertising Managing Director Varuni Amunugama Fernando, Sun Match Group Managing Director Gowri Rajan, ICC Sri Lanka Chairman Dinesh Weerakkody, Law College Principal Indira Samarasinghe, Corporate Governance Officer Lopa Rahman and Keells Food Non-Executive Director Shehara De Silva.
“The future belongs to our youth. As judges we will strive to look for exceptionalism and to ensure that the winners will have the potentiality to leverage this recognition as a springboard to build a better, brighter future for our country and perhaps the region or the planet,” said Keells Food Non-Executive Director Shehara De Silva while giving a brief explanation on how judges would measure the commitments of the youngsters towards the community in Sri Lanka.
De Silva also mentioned in Sri Lanka that there are more frightening figures when it comes to universities.
It is one of the reasons for Sri Lankan youth to opt for highly expensive international courses or study abroad, “67% of rural youth are unemployed and doing nothing”.
The judges will be closely looking for potential leaders who would be change-makers or resolve major issues as a developing country that Sri Lanka go through. Explaining the awards categories, she said there would be 12 awards along with a special award in total; it will be 13 awards as follows, Education, Media, Agriculture (Arts, Music, Dancing and Theatre), Tourism Award, Entrepreneurship, community service, Young Professional, Young Corporate Leader, Young Pioneer award, Young Activist and the 13th award will be given by judges according to their willingness.
Age group between 16 to 30 years are opened for nominations and De Silva also highlights the fact that this event is gender-neutral even though New Generation concept is founded by WIM.
IFC South Asia Corporate Governance Officer Lopa Rahman said, ‘’The youth of today are the leaders of tomorrow, by making effective use of their talents in innovative and enterprising ideas, they can create employment opportunities and enhance Sri Lanka’s job market, which fits well with IFC’s development agenda.”
“This award will help to inspire motivate and recognise such individuals. We hope to celebrate their efforts at the ceremony to be held later this year.”