Poverty, unemployment and insecurity are endemic throughout Northern Sri Lanka. Solidar Suisse supports several groups as they develop game-changing models for a better future.
The economic situation in northern Sri Lanka is challenging. Solidar Suisse accompanies producer groups on their promising road towards the creation of high quality jobs. In contrast to sole traders, groups can achieve more, both in terms of quality and quantity, advantages that translate into better access to markets. Moreover, because individual participants are shareholders, they are a great deal more interested and involved.
Here is a selection of ventures from the currently 30-plus groups involving some 660 men and women.
Fishermen and women operating in producer groups can negotiate better terms with their customers and suppliers. Moreover, the groups are cultivating and processing seaweed, an innovative product.
Groundnut producers receive training and education in improved cultivation techniques, modern farming methods and accounting. This enables the group to secure high-quality and better paid jobs as well as higher added value. Being successful in this sector enables women to access a more secure source income and greater respect in their communities.
For the production of brooms and brushes, Solidar has established a tight network of producer groups, community institutions and the manufacturing sector. The producer groups have become reliable suppliers of high-quality raw materials to national broom and brush manufacturers.
Solidar provided funding to women's groups for education and training in design, access to start-up capital and heavy-duty sewing machines. The women now produce large numbers of bags and satchels for direct sale to schools and government agencies.