‘Mabima Api’ does wonders for its village | Daily News

‘Mabima Api’ does wonders for its village

‘Mabima Api’ - a Whatsapp group initiated by Sriyani de Saram, is doing a great service to its village.

Mabima is a scenic village in the Biyagama electorate, bordering Kelani River where about 3,700 families of all walks of life live in harmony. Most of the villagers work in Biyagama Free trade Zone companies.

During the third wave of Covid-19, de Saram, a former deputy director of the EDB, had the idea to create a Whatsapp group to assist the villagers. She spoke to the village prelate and found similar thinking personalities viz. General Manager of Open Arc (Pvt) Ltd., Mahesh Happitiya, who is now the Co-chairman of the group, Senior Manager of Ancel Lanka (Pvt) Ltd., Dharshana Abayaweera, as Treasurer, Principal of the village preschool Suppipi Ariyapala as Secretary and an Executive Committee consisting scholars and leading businessmen of the village, to advise and monitor the work of the group.

Protect the village from C-19

Persons who really wanted to do something for their village joined the group increasing the numbers to 130 including those living abroad. To protect the village from COVID 19 and make the villagers aware of prevention methods to curb the pandemic they started a poster campaign in the village.

Posters were exhibited at all places people gather and leaflets were distributed among the villagers. These advised them how to protect themselves from C-19, including the important contact numbers of Health Authorities and Govt. Officers to contact immediately in case of emergency.

The funds received from the members and well-wishers of the village, helped them supply a package of essential food items to the affected. Masks. Detergents and vitamins were provided. Ideal Promotions donated masks while Lakwa (Pvt) Ltd situated in the village provided detergents to clean the affected houses. Kasun Cool House, another company situated in the village, provided fruit for the infected people.

We are fully aware that when someone is infected by Covid, they become mentally imbalanced and tensed. The specialty of the service of this group is not only to assist the affected people with food, but also to give them a morale boost, which the group members did, by talking to and monitoring the patients, daily.

The group created a network that included the Public Health Inspector (PHI), the Grama Niladaris and Development Officers, to assist the villagers. To support the PHI who was overloaded with work at that time, the group took the task of informing the PHI about infected people and putting quarantine notices on their houses. Further they supported the organizing of vaccination programs in the village.

Prof. Thamara Gunasekara of the University of Kelaniya, a member of the Executive Committee, looked after the education aspects of the village children, by providing information on avenues for higher education, apart from entering universities.

As movement was restricted during the pandemic and people were unable to go to work outside the village, the group created the ‘Game weda Gamatama’ program where they developed a database of all technical and skilled workers of the village. The needy got the opportunity to use this information to get their work done .

Let us clean our village

With the Dengue epidemic spreading following the C-19 pandemic in the village, the group organized the project ‘Let us clean our village’ where they organized the centres in and around the village to collect plastic and glass waste. De Saram said, “I participated in a waste management program in Germany, which helped immensely in organizing this programme”.

Lorry loads of glass bottles, broken glass, Pet bottles, and yogurt cups were removed from the village and handed over to recycling companies. The group appreciates the companies of the BOI Biyagama zone - SD Chemical, Ancel Lanka and Industrial Gas Company for providing storage tanks to collect the waste. Lakwa Pvt Ltd assisted in collecting the plastic waste and Ceylon Glass Company assisted via an agent in collecting the glass waste

Upcoming projects

The group’s upcoming projects will be ‘Ape Gama Lassana Karamu’, where housewives will have the responsibility to clean their portion of the road or path in front of their houses and trim the bushes in fences bordering the road.The group will do a program in the village school to educate the parents of the project via their children. Mahesh Happitiya, Co Chairman of the Group appreciating the support of the villagers said, “All other organizations of the village like Praja Police Service joined hands with ‘Mabima Api’ in executing their projects.

’Mage Gewatta’ is a project where the villagers are invited to plant vegetables for their own consumption reducing their cost of living at this hour and also to plant herbal plants such as Pawatta, Nika, Yakinaran and Kohomba which are essential for preparation of herbal steam for Covid 19 patients.

As most of the youngsters do not engage in any social welfare activities of the village, the group hopes to have a series of programs to change their mindset to take leadership in activities of the village.


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