In the previous quarter, this project began close collaboration with 14 Coexistence Societies located across Batticaloa and Ampara Districts. ACTED is supporting these societies by providing tailored trainings on institutional management, including Governance and Administration, Organizational Management, Financial Management, Project Cycle Management and External Relations and Resource Mobilization. Through our field assessments, it is apparent that these 14 societies lack the technical skills and capacity to carry out their mandate: To build coexistent communities where all individuals, regardless of their ethnic, religious or lingual identities, are treated equally and live in happiness. Coexistence Societies members noted finances are a huge barrier for their organisation. Many currently do not have established offices or any assets, which inhibits their ability to organize and implement activities within their communities. In addition, the societies have limited interaction with other stakeholders, including civil society organizations and local authorities.
Through ACTED’s intervention, supported by our partner the Federation of Sri Lankan Local Authorities (FSLGA), Coexistence Societies will be strengthened to effectively engage with local authorities, obtain funding and implement community activities to promote coexistence. Overall, the project will thus contribute to promoting and implementing inter-religious collaboration throughout Sri Lanka.