Southern province receives nine CDCs

09 Jul 2007

Galle, July 9, 2007 –  Six of nine community development centers that aim to promote cultural, social and economic activities in the tsunami affected southern province have been constructed and handed over to resettled tsunami affected villagers by UNDP’s Art Gold project.

These nine centers were constructed on a request made by the Pradeshiya Sabhas and the Divisional Secretaries of the southern province. These centers are expected to serve as community meeting places where  residents could develop and discuss their needs, provide social services and skills improvement facilities in the post tsunami resettlement sites. Most of these centers are located near temples and schools which are  regularly visited by the villagers.

The Community Development Centers will be equipped with  computers, printers, scanners, photocopy machines,  fax machines, white boards,  flip boards, computer tables,  office tables, steel cupboards, filing cupboards and other essential furniture items. The equipment are financed by UNDP’s CADREP (capacity development for recovery projects) project which has partnered with the Art Gold project to improve the environmental, social, cultural and economic status of the people.

The newest addition to the completed community centers, was declared open on June 29 at Gintota. A  team of representatives from Spain that included the officials of the Spanish local authorities and the Spanish Agency of International Cooperation representatives from Spanish Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Local groups are using the centers for community meetings to identify  the necessities and priorities of the area. The centers are located at Ambalangoda, Hikkaduwa, Gintota, Imaduwa, Weligama, Kekanadura, Tangalle, Hambanthota and Tissamaharama.

The Art Gold project which is funded by the Italian and Spanish local governments has selected the southern province to pilot its activities which include assistance to strengthen the local government structures. The initial phase of the project will mainly consist of meetings, agreements and creation of workings groups for the implementation of its work.