RYTHM Foundation supports Sri Lankan entrepreneurs with free training
After finishing secondary education, S. Sasitharan began to look for a job but life in Killinochi, Sri Lanka post the decade-long civil war was not easy with many struggling to find the proper means to support themselves and their families.
Having lost two of his brothers in the war, the burden of family responsibility fell on Sasitharan to support his aging parents and a sister who is still studying.
For months, he searched for a suitable job but was not successful. That was when he came to know about the career guidance programme organised by Sarvodaya, a non-governmental organisation that has been working towards creating a no-poverty, no-affluence and conflict-free society in Sri Lanka.
“I was really happy to be accepted and enrolled in their mobile phone repairing programme. I could foresee a future with the new skills,” he said.
Sasitharan and 15 other youth took part in the three months programme which is open to those aged between 19 to 40.
“After completing the programme, I worked at a friend’s mobile repair shop for four months. I gained some confidence and now I have set up a small repair corner at home. But since my house is far from the town, I do not have that many customers,” he said.
Another youth G. Sayanthan, 19 said the programme provided him a new opportunity to earn an income.
“I am now working at a mobile repair shop in Killinochi town. I hope to open my own repair shop once I gain more experience,” he said.
Sarvodaya Project Management Unit director Niswi said the NGO’s work is not done with just offering skills and programmes.
“We work closely with those who trained with us and hope to continue supporting them by providing facilities and funds to purchase tools and other equipment needed for the growth of their business,” he said.
“There are many individuals who share a similar struggle such as Sasitharan and Sayanthan in Killinochi and we aim to reach out to as many individuals as possible to help them create a better future for themselves,” Niswi added.
RYTHM Foundation supports the NGO’s mission to uplift and empower various disadvantaged groups in Sri Lanka by funding its initiatives such as vocational training and entrepreneur development.