Colombo, Sri Lanka (February 24): 155 families of estate worker community at Bridwell Estate in Bogawantalawa, Nuwara Eliya received newly built individual houses today (February 24th). The handing over ceremony was held under the patronage of Prime Minister of Sri Lanka Ranil Wickremesinghe and the High Commissioner of India to Sri Lanka H.E. Shri Taranjit Singh Sandhu with the participation of many other dignitaries as well.
These houses were built with the financial assistance provided by the Government of India while the Red Cross provided technical guidance and implemented the project. The project aims to build over 1,600 houses in five districts in the Uva and Central provinces of Sri Lanka. Each house consists with two bedrooms, a living area, kitchen, and a toilet with electricity and drinking water facility as well.
These houses will enrich and enhance the quality of life of estate workers who are living in line houses.
In 2016, after the successful completion of the Red Cross Post Conflict Recovery Programme in Northern Sri Lanka, which provided 21,000 affected families with financial and technical help to build new homes, the Sri Lanka Red Cross Society, in partnership with the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) and with funding from the Government of India, began to address one of the key issues in the plantation community – housing.
Red Cross Owner Driven Housing
The project utilized the same mechanism of owner-driven housing, which gave the communities the right to choose the design of a house of his or her own liking within the framework and standards set by the Red Cross. While the Government of India arranged financial assistance, the Red Cross provided technical support during the construction of these houses.
This happened in four stages where the complete grant of 950,000 rupees is given in four installments. The first stage was to lay the foundation, the next to construct walls, the third to complete the roof and door/windows, and the fourth to complete the house. The construction was undertook by the beneficiary with the support from the community and others.