Supporting efforts to reform and revitalize Sri Lanka’s agricultural sector at the grassroots during these challenging times, HNB launched ‘HNB Saru Ge Watte’.
It is a campaign to establish new marketplaces for rural farmers in urban areas while promoting home gardening in urban areas across the Central Province.
The campaign was launched in collaboration with provincial and district agricultural offices. It was held under the presence of Provincial Director General of Agriculture, S A De Silva, as the Chief Guest.
Leading the initiative was Thushari Ranaweera, HNB Deputy General Manager – Legal (Board Secretary), HNB; Nirosh Perera, Deputy General Manager/Chief Credit Officer, HNB; Chathura Ratnayake, Manager (Matale), CBSL;
together with Harsha Wickremasinghe, Regional Business Head (Central), HNB; Indika Ekanayake, Senior Manager – Customer Center, HNB Kandy; Thusitha Wijayasena, Chairman, Kandy City Centre; and Divisional Secretaries, Wathsala Marambage and R M S M Rathnayake.
“With our nation facing its worst economic and food security crisis in history, it is imperative that all Sri Lankans work together to ensure we can produce enough to help tide us over during these trying times. We are proud to launch the HNB Saru Ge-watte initiative to provide our customers, the public and Sri Lankan farmers with the knowledge and partnerships necessary to utilize all available land to cultivate food, and contribute even in a small way towards mitigating the worst impacts of the coming crisis,” Thushari Ranaweera, Deputy General Manager – Legal Board Secretary said.
Farmers in non-banking rural segments have difficulty connecting to buyers in urban areas. HNB announced that it would work with its existing customer network to help disintermediate the agriculture sector by creating direct relationships between rural farmers and consumers across the island to provide both sides with a decent livelihood from their harvest and a reasonable price for their essential needs.
The initiative also aims to promote home gardening among residences in urban areas. The Bank will facilitate seeds and fertilizer at dis- counted rates to residents to encourage farming in their gardens.
Working in collaboration with the Agriculture Department and Divisional Secretariat, HNB has organized a series of capacity-building programs to improve farmers’ financial literacy and technical know-how at the Kandy City Centre.
“The Central province is a cornerstone of the agricultural sector in Sri Lanka. Over the past few years, we at HNB have worked towards supporting farmers in the area through partnerships with our extensive portfolio of vendors. The ongoing crisis has only strengthened and fast-tracked this commitment to our farmers. We are delighted to note that organizations such as the Kandy City Center have stepped up to support us in this endeavor,” said Harsha Wickremasinghe, Central Region Business Head, HNB.
Officials from the Agriculture Department, Department of Animal Products, and several teams from the Agriculture Department, including Seeds and Plants, Commercial Agriculture, the Agriculture Publication Unit, HNB Central Regional Officers, and HNB Kandy Customer Center Officers, also participated in the event.
Lanka. Known as the “Festival of the Tooth”, the Esala Perahera is held to pay homage to the sacred Tooth Relic of the Lord Buddha.