Hambantota Port breaks ground for ‘Hope Village’ in Kandagasmankada

The Hambantota International Port Group (HIPG) marked the symbolic beginning of their flagship community development project, ‘Hope Village.’ This venture which has a budget of over Rs. 60 million, will in its initial stage include a community centre, health centre, agriculture centre, playground facilities as well as financial assistance to the village temple in Kandagasmankada, a village in the Lunugamwehera Division of the Hambantota District.

Ambassador for China to Sri Lanka Qi Zhenhong, who was Chief Guest at the foundation laying ceremony held at the project site, was greeted by Johnson Liu, CEO of HIPG.  The Management team of the Hambantota International Port, representatives of Colombo International Container Terminal (CICT) and the Nirmala Foundation also participated in the event.  Galapitagala Premarathana Thero, Chief Incumbent of the Kandagasmankada Rajamaha Viharaya; Chinese Ambassador Qi Zhenhong; Johnson Liu, CEO HIPG; Jack Huang, CEO CICT; Tissa Wickramasinghe, COO HIPG; Raymond Mu, CFO HIPG; Ravi Jayawickreme, CEO HIPS; representatives from Divisional and District Secretariats; C. Wickramaratne, OIC Lunugamwehera Police Station, along with senior staff of HIPG and residents of the village took part in breaking ground at the site, to lay the foundation for the project.

Speaking at the ceremony, Ambassador Qi Zhenhong said, “The friendship between China and Sri Lanka dates back over twenty centuries. It is deeply rooted in the hearts of the two nations no matter how the domestic and international situation changes. China and Sri Lanka have been helping each other during difficult times and China will continue to do so in the future. In addition, China wishes to assist Sri Lanka in poverty alleviation. The Hope Village initiative towards uplifting the wellbeing of villagers will be successful with a mutually beneficial partnership”.

The ambassador presented the IT Lab of the village community centre, which will be named ‘China Sri Lanka Friendship IT Education Centre,’ with preliminary IT equipment, which was a highlight of the event. He also distributed toys amongst the village kids. In addition to the Hope Village sponsorship, the HIPG and CICT teams made a cash donation to the village temple.

The ‘Hope Village’ concept, a development model village that will benefit marginalised communities, is a collaboration between China Merchant Foundation (CMF) the CSR arm of the China Merchant Group, and the Nirmala Foundation, a non profit organisation working for positive change.  CMF is the sponsor of the project which will be owned by the Nirmala Foundation, and monitored by the Divisional Secretariat of Lunugamwehera. HIPG and CICT teams are the facilitators of the project.


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