This Project was a short term funded by Start Network, England. The aim of this project was to provide relief and response to damages and water disaster situation caused by Southwest monsoon in Southern Province of Sri Lanka. We selected Athuraliya and Akuressa DS Divisions in Matara District as they are the most prone DS Divisions to flood damages in Southern Province.
As per the lead agency (ACTED) guidelines, a Project Coordinator, MEAL officer, Logistics Officer and a Field Officer were assigned to complete the work. A selection criteria was prepared and shared with Divisional Secretaries and respective GNs to identify beneficiaries for cash for work and the activity locations. In selecting beneficiaries, most vulnerable, those affected by recent monsoon rains and high risk households were identified. The blocked water channels were identified which have not been cleaned for over 5-10 years and including those water canals which were destroyed due to recent rains. These were identified especially by Divisional Secretariat staff, GNs, President of Farmers Societies, community leaders and Caritas SED Galle staff adhering to the selection criteria relating to CFW beneficiaries. We selected 260 beneficiaries in Akuressa DS Division with 26 locations and 300 beneficiaries in Athuraliya with 28 locations. Under this project, we also purchased and distributed response kits to District Disaster Management Centres and Safety Centres.
We did a survey of CFW beneficiaries while they were engaged in CFW (cash for work) activities in different locations in both Athuraliya and Akuressa Divisions. We got a feedback from 75% of CFW beneficiaries . They expressed their gratitude and wholehearted thanks for engaging them in CFW activities as they were made most vulnerable and poor due to the ongoing economic crisis and the hardships they were undergoing are immense. The community and the villagers in many CFW locations came and assisted to clean and clear the blocked channels voluntarily without expecting any remuneration and also contributed by supplying refreshments and lunch in some instances to our CFW beneficiaries.
We had to experience several challenges including intermittent heavy rains during implementation period which slowed down the coordination. However, we are pleased to state that we completed the work successfully.