Today, we have converted the earth given by our ancestors, filled with richness and greenery, into concrete lands. However, the absence of that greenery and the effects of climate changes have made the new generation realize the value of the environment. This photo, 5 young students from different South Asian countries holding a little plant, represents the urge to the whole world to come together to save our planet, besides all the differences of nationalities, color, sex and age. This photo also portends that next generation of youth leaders will have to share and manage the insufficient supply of resources with great responsibility. As Wangari Maathai, 2004 Noble Prize Winner said “In making sure that other species survive, we will be ensuring the survival of our own”, the next generation of green entrepreneurs should hold their hands to make a sustainable world for a better future.
I am a Sri Lankan student who is studying in Asian University for Women in Bangladesh. This is a new university. Other than the studies, the students are given changes to participate in international competitions and to build network around the world. This blog is also one of the ways we are sharing our thoughts to build communication with the world. However, I wanted to say is that I took part in a competition which I am selected as a delegate of the ‘Education Without Boarders 2009 conference’. Here I chose to make a documentary for nearly 15 minutes about a unique business in a country which I can introduce to the world. Therefore, I selected to do Microfinance Institutions in Bangladesh. To make this more interesting I include how MFIs are surviving in the world financial crisis. It is true that MFIs are standing alone within the crisis when all other financial institutions, banks and companies are facing the down fall. The secret fact is keeping money within the borrowers and rotating it in a recycle basis. This means not taking any external money from any of the commercial banks and international organizations. By this MFIs can survive any frightful financial crisis. I named my first documentary as ‘MICROFINANCE: The Unnoticed Hero’ and wished to show this documentary in the future post. Before I concluded I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who helped me do this documentary. So THANK YOU!!!
Bangladesh, the birth place of Microfinance Institutions (MFIs), has been successful in eradicating poverty for the last three decades in the country and some other countries too. It has carried many promises of social and economic transformation, with the shift towards targeting women for social development. This was particularly designed for empowering women and removing poverty in their family lives. The best example I could give is Grameen Bank which was established by Dr. Muhammad Yunus, the 2006 Nobel Prize Winner. It is a banking system which the officers go village to village educating and training the people for nearly 4 weeks to take mini loans and use it in a profitable manner. When the women are ready to take loans, they are first divide into small groups for any future support. Then they get their opportunity to finally get a loan. Here the women don’t need to show any documents or assets to prove that they will pay back the money as it totally runs with the trust of the people. The bank also offers 5 different kinds of loans like business loan, education loans, normal loans, housing loans and beggar loans. Expect for the beggar loan, another loans had to pay a very small interest rate which they collect in a weekly basic. This means very week the group gathers around to pay their weekly installment which is nearly 25 to 50 taka (50 to 100 Sri Lankan Rupees) so that it want be a pressure to the people to pay a big sum end of the month.. The interesting fact is that a bank officer comes to the village to collect the money and advice the groups if they need any help weekly. That is why Grameen Bank is known as the village bank.
Therefore, I believe and trust that this banking system will benefit our country and our people. We only need to modify this system according to our lifestyle and culture which can change the lives of many poor people in rural areas and devastation areas. It is now up to someone to come forward to actually do it. I hope it will start quickly…..
Poverty has been ruling Sri Lanka for decades and the government has been the co-workers by providing aids and fund to the poor citizens. This has been continuing for so long that the people have become so much depended on the government that they are not even trying to earn their living. This is a bad habit and will later affect the people if the government stops funding them. And if they did stops funding, what would happened to all these people? The solution of this can be Microfinance loan which is given by the Microfinance Institutions (MFI).
Studying in Bangladesh, I got to know many tradition and unique things about this country. One such interesting thing I like was this MFI which has spread all over Bangladesh. These institutions mainly provide mini loans and give many benefits to the poor people. This was introduced to the people as they were suffering from hunger and specially poverty. To overcome their problems MFI has been a great success t Bangladesh. I believe that introducing this institution to the country and spreading them will help most of the problems of the country. I would like to write about this more in detail in my next post.
Our history starts from 5th BC, when King Vige and his 700 men came from India to Sri Lanka finding for a land to stay. He named it ‘ Thambepanni’ and from there onward Sri Lanka was been ruled by some of the Indian kings and queens who were developing the country in their own technology which is known to be unique and sophistication to understand. They made their kingdoms, castles and other important things using all the natural resources as there wasn’t any modern technology those days. Thou, our history starts from long time and people were trying their best to improve the country, still we are in the developing side. This is something which we should be more careful as by now it was said by the Singapo president that Sri Lanka was a country which was near to be developed. But what has happen now?
Sri Lanka is well known for its beauty. It is the pearl of the Indian oceans. The lovely Waterfalls, blue sea shows, the green paddy fields and tea plantation……. all are marvelous. Although some part of the country is facing the devastation of war, the beauty of the country still remains. These are some of the pictures I took when I was back in Sri Lanka.
Look at the picture once again!!!
This is the present condition which is making our Lanka fall down. Today, the distraction which is happening in north and south has borrowed our children and our land from the future, to fight against one another to split Sri Lanka apart. Is this what we really want? Noo… this is not what we want!!! This is not our goal!!! We are for getting that our goal is to be developed…. To be better than we are now. But we keep on doing the same mistake over and over again. When are we really going to forget what our ancestor did? They did a blunder; do the children have to continue it? No I don’t think so… We, the future have to stop it and fix what our fathers have done. Communicating is the best way for either side. May be the first two times it want work, but we can’t give up. Both the sides have to listen to either side as well as both the sides have to accept or give-up some of their goals because we can’t full fill every think either side is asking for. May be in the late future they will consider happening but first we need to set to gather……so when are we going to do that???
Jaffna is the capital of the Northern Province in Sri Lanka. It was one of the most important and cultural cities in the country for several decades. Most of the population consisted of Sri Lankan Tamil, Muslims and Sinhalese, so the citizens celebrated many colorful festivals throughout the year. The city is also famous for sea products, red onions, tobacco, palmera trees and etc which have a contribution in exporting. In addition, the children of Jaffna are considered to be the most literate students as the rate shows 90.7% among the whole country. As a result many of the students were going to the universities from Jaffna.
However, the ethnic conflict which started in the 1980s has destroyed the city. All of the Muslims and Sinhalese were forced to leave as well as some of Tamils from this region went to other parts of the country or to foreign countries. These incidents left the city with a few people that ruined the beauty and the important things of Jaffna. After the civil war started, most of the industries have been closed and in small scale, people have started to live. Moreover, the present condition of Jaffna’s economy is facing instability as prices of goods are high compared to the south. Although most of everything was destroyed, the literacy rate has not been taken by anyone. But there have been many differences down to the students like rearranging the enrollment system according to a district based level which minimized the number of students entering the universities.
All these problems lead to the down fall of this great city. Now many natives and foreigners have a negative eye towards Jaffna. It is our mistake that has caused this to happen. So, now it is our responsibility to gain Jaffna and to give its glory back to her. We can’t let it be destroyed by others; we have to save it from others. This is not only a call for the government leaders but also to the native people in Sri Lanka that our brothers and sisters in Jaffna need us. It can be a mistake that our ancestors did, but now it is the time for us to forgive and to forget the past and to think of the future of Sri Lanka. We are very far from our goal to become developed and this war has exacerbated it. Therefore, it is time for us to step up and go forward…….. What do you think???
Though Colombo is the former capital city, it is the busiest city in Sri Lanka. The city is mixed with many modern lives and majestic buildings. It has around 647 100 people living in a small place as it is the most developed area of the country. The main reason of the development is because of the best resources and facilities are located in this city. Moreover, the head offices, the industries, political offices and other organizations are also situated here. Therefore, the government has to send most of the money in maintaining this part of the country. As a result of this, the other parts of the country is not developed nor touched. This has made the people to leave their cities, villages behind and migrate to Colombo mostly for jobs, education, facilities and political reasons. So now we see the cause for the down fall of the country as one quarter of Sri Lanka is developed and the rest not even close to it.
Is the government doing the correct thing? Is this fair to the public? I don’t think so; we have to address this issue seriously otherwise, this will harm the future of the country badly. Though Colombo is the head and the appearance for Sri Lanka, the rest of the country is the body and without its function, Sri Lanka is paralyzed. Therefore, the government should provide sufficient electricity, transports facility, communication and technology service, job opportunities and education institutions which will make the private sector also spread all over Sri Lanka. By this, the country will solve many of their current problems which will make the people cheerful for now.
The free education system has made Sri Lankan youngsters to answer a tough examination named General Certificate of Education, Advance Level (G.C.E A/L) to be selected to the universities because Sri Lanka is facing a shortage of universities. Currently, the country has 16 universities for around three hundred thousand students who sit for this examination and only around 12% of the students enter.
So what happens to the rest? The students who are capable to afford their higher education in foreign countries migrate which also leads to a huge problem of brain drain in the country. Rest of the students who are unable to enter the university do an External degree; however the opportunity of this is also lost as the education ministry has decided not to offer it from this year onwards. The reason they brought out is that the quality of the degree will reduce and this will affect the original specification. In one way it will, as the rest of hundreds of thousands who don’t get the chance will be left with this opportunity. This will be an unfair method to the students who get the original specification because the external degree takes only three years to finish whereas the university takes up to 4 years. Also there are many other personal advantages which are happening within lecturers and students in the open universities. This leads the remaining students to pick their higher education in the private institutions or the international institutions which are costly. As a result, many drop their high studies hoping to have a job. But this isn’t sufficient in today’s world since the market requires the best as there few jobs. Moreover, the A/L education provides the basic fundamental knowledge Therefore, many students are given low income jobs which some don’t prefer whereas some take it as they don’t have a choice but most of all many face the problem of unemployment. This leads me to question why doesn’t the government take a big action against the unemployment in the country but provides a basic education to all? I believe that the government is forgetting one part of their role and that is supplying stuffiest jobs. Therefore, doing a fabulous work by increasing the education level in Sri Lanka is a great job but forgetting it consequence which is happening is the vast part that one can do. As the education helps the man to grow but unemployment will ruin a life. Thus, I feel that the Sri Lankan government should also take this serious action into their consideration so that it will benefit the future and development of the country better.