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Tuesday, December 11, 2012

SLT empowers “Preserving heritage for tomorrow” through its’ 2013 calendar

SLT empowers “Preserving heritage for tomorrow” through its’ 2013 calendar
SLT empowers “Preserving heritage for tomorrow”
through its’ 2013 calendar

‘Preserving Heritage for Tomorrow’

Sri LankaTelecom PLC (SLT) proudly announces the eagerly awaited launch of its calendar for the forthcoming year. SLT’s Year 2013 calendar once again lives up to its reputation as one of the most coveted corporate collectables in the country with a focus on the ‘Rush & Reed Craft of Sri Lanka’ under the main them of ‘Preserving Heritage for Tomorrow’, which is a part of SLT’s CSR activities. The calendar has earned a reputation as a collector’s item that is not only of aesthetic value but is also informative.

SLT had been producing thematic calendars for the past 10 years with a focus on the culture, nature and heritage of Sri Lanka. SLT takes care to select art forms that are closely related to Sri Lanka and its people in its art and culture themed calendars. Its calendars have highlighted Sri Lanka’s rich heritage in these respective fields, putting the spotlight on indigenous talent and diversity. As a piece of art as well educational, the SLT calendar positions itself at the forefront by being one of the most high profile and popular corporate calendars in the country.
The SLT 2013 calendar focuses on the Rush & Reed Craft of Sri Lanka, as it is a unique craft that has been passed down from generation to generation and holds pride of place in Sri Lanka’s legacy of handicrafts. Sri Lanka has always been known the world over for its handlooms and handicrafts and holds the potential of bringing in foreign exchange and providing economic benefits to the disadvantaged people engaged in this craft. Unfortunately, the craft is in danger of fading away due to lack of support and popularity, which is why SLT decided to take up the cause.
Greg Young, CEO, SLT, commented: “The annual SLT calendar is an important milestone for the company, and I am delighted to note the respect and appreciation it evokes from anyone who sees it. It is designed and produced in-house by our own staff. This year, the calendar focuses on Rush and Reed craft, to highlight this intricate craft and its skilled weavers. This craft has a strong relevance in today’s world, as products made from these materials are eco-friendly and can be used as replacements for environmentally harmful materials such as polythene and other synthetic materials. The unique designs in these products convey tales of the ancient traditions and culture of Sri Lanka, from the times of the ancient kings. SLT remains committed to promoting and supporting the people of the nation and as the voice of the country, we are privileged to use the calendar as a platform to publicize this valuable craft. SLT’s annual calendar forms a part of our corporate social responsibility under the theme of ‘preserving heritage for tomorrow’. We seek to be an advocate of the rich heritage of our country and aim to support the revival of this dying art and craft for the benefit of future generations.”
About Rush & Reed Craft
Among the Sri Lankan traditional crafts Rush and Reed weaving is a unique artistic skill that has been developed and used by Sri Lankans for many thousands of years. This craft weaves itself into the very lifestyles of people traditionally engaged in livelihoods of agriculture and paddy farming. In fact, the craft has been the subject of many tales and poems.
The craft carries a tremendous bearing on culture and traditions, environment as well as the economy of Sri Lanka. The intricate designs require careful planning and organizing to ensure that the right sizes of reeds are collected in the right amounts and colours to ensure the accurate production of the desired design. All designs are inspired and derived from natural elements, geometric forms and mathematics and often include flowers, birds and animal motifs. The beauty of the design comes from the imagination, creativity and skills of the weaver.
The traditional materials used in weaving are rush grasses like gal ähä, tulhiriya, hävan and palm leaves from coconut, thal, thala and indi as well as pandanus. They are also usually coloured using natural colouring materials and pigments extracted from trees and plants, however today, artificial dyes are also used. Although there are various types of reeds and rushes, only about 10 have been used for this purpose from generations, with many more yet to be discovered. Furthermore, the growth of certain rush varieties help to purify the soil with their ability to remove harmful chemicals from it. Thus, the importance of reviving the traditional methods of rush and reed cultivation and conservation helps play a major role in the rehabilitation of ecological processes. 

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