|Coca-Cola & Habitat for Humanity dedicate revitalized|
wells and schools in Batticaloa
Coca-Cola Sri Lanka and Habitat for Humanity Sri Lanka dedicated more than 1700 wells and 4 play schools to the community members and students of Batticaloa today, under a joint community revitalization project. The project was begun in 2011 after the devastating floods in the Eastern Province of the country rendered 1 million people homeless, with 200,000 acres of paddy fields destroyed and 100,000 wells contaminated. The two partners have helped in the clearing of 1783 wells and the rebuilding of 4 playschools, impacting more than 3,800 people in the region.
|Neeraj Garg – Vice President, South West Asia & Juice Business,|
Coca-Cola India & South West Asia Business Unit;
unveiling the commemorative plaque to
open the Navalar pre school in Batticaloa
Mr. S. Giritharan – Divisional Secretary (MN) of Batticaloa; dedicated the Navalar Pre-School in Batticaloa,in the presence of Neeraj Garg – Vice President, South West Asia & Juice Business, Coca-Cola India & South West Asia Business Unit; Sanjeev Kumar – Vice President-Finance, Coca-Cola India & South West Asia Business Unit; Tony Senewiratne – National Director for Habitat for Humanity Sri Lanka, Kapila Welmillage, Country Managers- SABCO, Sri Lanka and Abhishek Jugran, Country Manager-Sri Lanka,Coca-Cola Far East Ltd.
Cleaning the contaminated wells in the affected areas was crucial, since the community depends almost exclusively on these wells for their daily supply of water. The project acquired a unique element when home-owners began providing unskilled labour to help the project teams in their work. This reduced the overall time and the monetary benefits than what was initially planned. The support extended by the community enabled the project committee to complete 1783 wells, versus the 1600 that were initially budgeted for.
Neeraj Garg – Vice-President, South West Asia & Juices, Coca-Cola India & South West Asia Business Unit said, “The Coca-Cola Company has a world-wide focus on sustainability and undertakes a number of initiatives on water, climate protection and promoting healthy living in the community. We believe
that sustainable businesses thrive only amidst sustainable communities. Therefore it is crucial for us to support community initiatives across the world, including in Sri Lanka. We undertake various programs in partnership with organizations like Habitat for Humanity to improve sanitation, hygiene and water conditions.
We are very happy that we have been able to make a positive difference to the lives of people in Batticaloa.We hope we can partner with more organizations in the future as well and impact the society and the environment in more positive, sustainable ways.”
Coca-Cola Sri Lanka and HFHSL not only ensured accessible clean water to people of the region, but also empowered the local community through training programs on water conservation, water preservation and critical, immediate disaster response techniques.
Tony Senewiratne – National Director for Habitat for Humanity Sri Lanka commented – “Habitat for Humanity has been working in Sri Lanka for many years now, yet when we rebuild a school or clean a well,it is the same satisfaction we get – that we have made a difference to someone else’s life. We are very happy that we have brought about a change in the lives of the young children who can now gain access to education through these pre schools. We are glad that Corporates like Coca-Cola are partnering with us and we hope that more and more companies join us in our endeavors.”
The teams also distributed posters to homes, schools and government institutions on water filtration and conservation methods to ensure that the water used by people is not contaminated. A total of 20 training programs were held for community members in 8 villages and 43 training programs were held in schools across the region.
Coca-Cola in Sri Lanka
Coca-Cola in Sri Lanka refreshes thousands of 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 Tonic Water, Lion Gingerale, Lion Ginger Beer, Schweppes Tonic Water, Minute
Maid Orange, Minute Maid Mango, Minute Maid Apple and Minute Maid Mixed Fruit. The Coca-Cola System in Sri Lanka employs more than 400 people. Coca-Cola undertakes a number of community development and sustainability projects like the Coca-Cola Cricket Pathways to promote healthy active living, water and sanitation projects in partnership with organizations like United Nations Development Programme and Habitat for Humanity and PET collection and recycling with the Central Environmental Authority.