Hambantota Port breaks ground for ‘Hope Village’ | Daily News

Hambantota Port breaks ground for ‘Hope Village’

Ambassador and entourage participating in the foundation laying
Ambassador and entourage participating in the foundation laying

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.

Ambassador Qi Zhenhong said, “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.

Johnson Liu, CEO of HIPG and the representative of the China Merchants Group said, “Our aim is to develop the ‘Hope Village’ concept into a desirable residential level with fully-fledged facilities and help villagers develop their livelihoods under a cooperative model. The purpose is to uplift the rural community and improve living conditions of people in the area. This is the foundation of our Green Development concept, and I truly believe the Hope Village project will be a positive contribution to the local community.”

The CEO took the Ambassador and his entourage on a visual tour of the ‘Hope Village’ site and planned activities under concept, outlining the project’s objectives and the ways in which it will benefit approximately 2,170 residents of Kandagasmankada.

CEO of HIPG Johnson Liu, with Ambassador Qi Zhenhong and representatives of the Nirmala Foundation presenting the sponsorship 

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