UNHCR-private sector tie-up to improve IDP living conditions
Sri Lanka's largest apparel exporter, Brandix Lanka Limited, has
linked up with UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) to improve the living
conditions of conflict-displaced communities (Internally Displaced
Persons/IDPs) in the North Western Province.
This is part of a larger programme involving Quick Impact Projects (QIPs),
an integral part of UNHCR's operations in Sri Lanka, which sees the
implementation of small-scale and short-term projects that have an
immediate impact on communities. These projects aim to promote IDPs'
return as well as facilitate stability, a UNHCR media release said.
Commending Brandix's contribution UNHCR Representative in Sri Lanka
Amin Awad says, "The group is setting an example to the world of social
responsibility by the private sector in Sri Lanka and particularly by
the apparel sector, for which they should be recognised." This is the
first step in UNHCR's efforts to forge strategic partnerships with Sri
Lanka's private sector, to address some key humanitarian needs.
Brandix pioneered the concept of total solutions in the Sri Lankan
apparel industry and was once again recognised as Sri Lanka's largest
apparel exporter by the Export Development Board recently.
Brandix is supported by over 20 manufacturing facilities in Sri Lanka
and strategically located international sourcing offices.
Brandix's Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) efforts are driven by
the central corporate theme 'Water is Life' and constitute a long term
commitment to improving the living conditions of people in need
including bringing safe drinking water to households in Sri Lanka.
The Group's community outreach initiatives also include providing
water through desalination plants, well and pipe-borne water to
communities in and around its manufacturing plants and the improvement
of sanitation facilities in needy areas.
UNHCR began operations in Sri Lanka in 1987, and is the designated
lead agency mandated for the protection and assistance of persons
displaced by the conflict.
The UNHCR is also monitoring the ongoing return programme facilitated
by the Government in the East through which some 176,000 persons have
already returned to their villages.