In cooperation with local authorities, approximately 40 Sri Lankan women aged 14-44 are selected to take part in training programs such as sewing, computer skills, and English. Courses are finalized by passing an exam and issuing a certificate. The intention is to create the opportunity and the resources for participants to start an independent business or a job and thereby ensure future earning possibilities.
After the 2004 Tsunami, many women became sole providers. The district of Ampara on the east coast of Sri Lanka was severely hit. Danish Red Cross in cooperation with Sri Lankan Red Cross and local training authorities proposed a set-up on vocational training based on needs in the area and individual preferences. A house was selected and vocational training teachers were hired. Staff of the project made visits to and interviewed potential pupils on their family situation, educational background, motivation to learn, and socio-economic status. Courses are stipulated for 2-3 months with a maximum of three hours a day as many women have children to look after.
Danish Red Cross has been an excellent and professional managing partner. Many visitors to Sri Lanka have visited the project. Several other Tsunami projects have not been carried out because they involved establishment of new buildings requiring permits, which have been difficult to obtain. This Training Centre is using an existing building which is rented.