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A small community of 1600 villagers at Kallaru, Kilinochchi lead the charge on water conservation

Ceremonial
unveiling of the plaque commemorating the hand-over of the RWH System
at a
Pre-school in Kalluru, Kilinochchi.Standing
L- R : Kapila Wellimilage,
 Country Manager, Coca-Cola Beverages Sri Lanka
Limited,  Abhishek Jugran,
Country
Manager, Coca-Cola Far East Limited, Mr. Katheeswaran –
Assistant Director
Planning for the District Secretariat of Kilinochchi,
Mary Macdaleen-
President, Kallaru Women’s Rural Development Society,
 Asim Parekh- Vice
President, Technical, Coca-Cola India and South West Asia,
Deepak Jolly, Vice
President, Public Affairs & Communication,
Coca-Cola India and South West
Asia and Tim McNair-
Chief Technical Advisor, UN-Habitat Sri Lanka.

The community partnered with Coca-Cola and UN-Habitat to create rainwater harvesting structures as a step towards water management

The symbolic inauguration of 125
rainwater harvesting structures in the drought stricken Kallaru village in Kilinochchi, could probably end up
being a landmark project in these northern parts of Sri Lanka. Fluctuating
rainfalls, over dependence on rains for water availability, rise of water borne
diseases which result from the lack of access to safe drinking water, could be
a thing of the past.
Coca-Cola in collaboration with
UN-Habitat and with assistance from the Kallaru Women’s Rural Development
Society collectively worked on a project to
create rainwater harvesting tanks and related infrastructure for 1625 residents
in the area. This has led to improved access to clean drinking water for the
villagers.

Deepak Jolly, Vice President, Public Affairs & Communication, Coca-Cola India and South West Asia plants a sapling with members of the Community at Kalluru Village as Keiko Matsuo, Project Management and Coordination Consultant, UNHABITAT looks on.
Deepak Jolly, Vice President, Public Affairs & Communication,
 Coca-Cola India and South West Asia plants a sapling with
members of the Community at Kalluru Village as Keiko Matsuo,
 Project Management and Coordination Consultant,
UNHABITAT looks on.
The project was dedicated to the
community members in Kallaru village by Mr. Katheeswaran – Assistant Director Planning for the District Secretariat of Kilinochchi, Mary Macdaleen- President, Kallaru Women’s Rural
Development Society, Asim Parekh- Vice President, Technical, Coca-Cola India and South
West Asia, Deepak Jolly, Vice
President, Public Affairs & Communication, Coca-Cola India and South West
Asia, Kapila Wellimilage, Country
Manager, Coca-Cola Beverages Sri Lanka Limited, Abhishek Jugran, Country Manager, Coca-Cola Far East Limited and Tim McNair– Chief Technical Advisor,
UN-Habitat Sri Lanka.
Kilinochchi in Northern Sri Lanka, is an area dominated by
agriculture and following poor rains year-round, had been an area stricken with
drought in 2011 and 2012. This has created challenges around availability of
clean drinking water for the residents of the area.
Coca-Cola and UN-Habitat came together in
2012, to provide the basic necessities of clean drinking water and water for
household usage for some parts of the area.  Funded by The Coca-Cola Foundation, UN-Habitat
worked with Kallaru Women’s Rural Development Society from October 2012 to
October 2013 to construct 120 RWH projects in homes and five in public buildings.
The new rainwater harvesting system is enabling the community to conserve and re-use water during the dry season. Following some monsoon
rains in November and December 2013, the newly installed rainwater harvesting
tanks filled with water was used by the beneficiaries for drinking, sanitation,
cooking, bathing, washing clothes and home gardening. During the dry period the
tanks are being utilised for water storage. The project also facilitated ground water recharging at a domestic
level through community awareness programmes.
Speaking at
the inauguration of the project, Asim
Parekh, Vice President, Technical, Coca-Cola India and South west Asia,
said, “This project is special in many ways. It is not
just functional thereby ensuring availability of water and preventing water
from running off uselessly into the sea. It is also about giving respect to
water – the fundamental element of human survival. We know that water cannot be
created by human beings.                 It
can only be harvested. And therefore what you have accomplished today will play
a big part in sensitizing the current and future generations to respect water.
I applaud all of you – your wisdom, your collaboration and your far
sightedness.”
The establishment of domestic and public
rainwater harvesting systems in the village also enabled three schools in the
area, benefiting 200 school children and 19 teachers. The Kallaru Women’s Rural
Development Society has been able to provide clean drinking water and improve
the health of 60 women and 110 children of the community. Additionally 52
pre-school children also benefited from improved health and well-being as a
result of the RWH systems.
Commenting
on the partnership with Coca-Cola,
Tim McNair, Chief Technical Advisor, UN-Habitat
Sri Lanka, said,
“These 125 RWH tanks will enable
thousands of community members, children, schools and health centres in the
vicinity to have improved access to water. UN-Habitat has worked closely with
the Kallaru WRDS and the community members in implementing this project. We are
glad that The Coca-Cola Foundation partnered with us in this endeavour.”

In order to ensure the sustainability of the
project, Coca-Cola worked with UN-Habitat and WRDS to facilitate training on
RWH system installation and maintenance for appointed community leaders.   

Coca-Cola in Sri Lanka

Coca-Cola in Sri
Lanka refreshes consumers throughout the country with an exciting range of beverages
including Coca-Cola, Coca-Cola Light, Sprite, Fanta Orange, Fanta Portello,
Fanta Cream Soda, Lion Soda, Lion Gingerale, Lion Ginger Beer, Minute Maid
Orange, Minute Maid Mango and Minute Maid Mixed Fruit. The Coca-Cola System in
Sri Lanka employs more than 1500 people both directly and indirectly. Coca-Cola
undertakes a number of community development projects to provide access to
clean water and sanitation to various communities across Sri Lanka. Our other
CSR initiatives include the Coca-Cola Cricket Pathways to promote active
healthy living, PET collection for recycling with the Central Environmental
Authority, development of education and schooling facilities in the country and
empowering 12,500 women by the year 2020. We have been awarded the National
Quality Award in 2013 for our continued commitment to world class technology
and quality standards. We have also received 3 awards a CSR Award from the
Ceylon Chamber of Commerce for 2nd Runner Up in the Best Corporate Citizen
Sustainability Awards (less than 15bn turnover category), Best Sustainability
Project Awards 2013 for Water Stewardship in 2013.

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