An Initiative on Wetland Conservation and Livelihood Enhancement by a Youth Community Group
An Initiative on Wetland Conservation and Livelihood Enhancement by a Youth Community Group
Kolonnawa is a freshwater marsh ecosystem located in the Colombo district of the Western province Sri Lanka and surrounded by highly populated and industrialized sites. It belongs to the Colombo Marsh complex that consists of Kolonnawa, Kotte and Heen Marsh. The wetland is excessively used by the people in the vicinity for income generation such as for fishing, cattle grazing, and collecting firewood and for the purpose of garbage disposal. Another significant risk to the wetland is land reclamation and recreational activities (Marawila &Thibbotuwawa, 2010). Degradation of the marsh has resulted in the reduction of flood detention. Besides, the awareness among the residents on the importance of the marsh was poor and this was common across all education levels. The community did not show any interest in environmental protection. No community based organization on wetland protection was found and no conservation action has been taken at community level. (Samarasinghe and Dayawansa, 2013).

The project expects to;
• Conservation of biodiversity in 28 ha of Gotatuwa marsh and enhance ecosystem services.
• Develop successfully running 10 eco-friendly social enterprises
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Project Snapshot

Emotional Intelligence and Life Skills Traning Team
Sri lanka
Area Of Work:
Land Degradation
Operational Phase:
OP6 - Y3 (Jul17 - Jun 18)
Grant Amount:
US$ 40,000.00
Co-Financing Cash:
US$ 25,773.85
Co-Financing in-Kind:
Project Number:
Start Date:
End Date:
Currently under execution

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Project Characteristics and Results
Promoting Public Awareness of Global Environment
Social media is an emerging trend in Sri Lanka. According to the statistics released by Telecommunication Regulatory Commission of Sri Lanka (TRC), the number of mobile broadband connections has doubled each year, registering an average growth of nearly 96.5% during the past six years. Fixed internet connections have also registered a praiseworthy growth of 68%. While e-commerce is still a budding industry in Sri Lanka, social media is taking leaps and strides among the local internet users. Facebook and YouTube are the second and fourth traffic receivers in the country and there are 3-3.5 million Facebook account users in Sri Lanka today, which amounts to nearly 16% of the local population and the majority of Facebook users (2.8 million) are concentrated on the Western Province of the country. The proposed social media campaign in this project will be highly effective for promoting public awareness. The activity on a national level short film and the art and poster competition will increase public awareness island-wide and it will be promoted through media using “TV Derana”. In addition, articles written by youth and selected art and posters will be published in newspapers and magazines.
Notable Community Participation
The project is mainly focused on a youth community driven management mechanism to protect and conserve the Kolonnawa marsh and its ecosystem. The youth involvement in this project is more than 75%. The grantee (Emotional Intelligence Life Skills Training Team) will do the planning and coordination activities while most of the implementation activities for the community or to the wetland will be done by the selected youth e.g. social media campaign, shramadana (voluntary giving of labour) activities, short film competition, PRA surveys, etc. The age group of the selected youth will be between 16 - 30 years who are living around the Kolonnawa Divisional Secretariat area. Most of the youth are students of the Kolonnawa Youth Center which belongs to National Youth Services Council of Sri Lanka.
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Grantee Contact

Mr Prasad Jayasinghe
Phone: 0777263957


116/2, Kesbawa Raod
Boralesgamuwa ,

SGP Country office contact

Ms. Dinali Jayasinghe
Nuwan Perera


UNDP, 202-204, Bauddhaloka Mawatha, P.O. Box 1505
Colombo 7