Prasad Sanjeewa, a Machine operator at SML, Srilanka
Success is the result of hard work and commitment", says Prasad Sanjeewa
Prasad Sanjeewa is 25-years-old and has locomotor disability. He has completed his G.C.E at Kalutara. (General Certificate of Education examination, conducted by the Sri Lankan education department, equivalent to grade 11 and is taken by students during their senior secondary school).
Prasad Sanjeewa says, “My father G.Dharmasiri works in the Sri Lankan Police Department. My mother Nandani is a house wife. We live in Kalutara which is in the western province of Sri Lanka. I have no siblings. I learnt Computers and Electronics from Seeduwa Training school and worked to earn my pocket expenses.”
Looking back Prasad says, “I could not find a job in my village because of my disability. The field officer of Kalutara LRC Satellite Centre identified me for Leonard Cheshire’s disability programme on Foundation Training. The programme filled me with confidence. It gave me a good grounding in time management, numeracy, language skills, computer skills, life skills and communication.”
“One day there was an opening for helpers at the SML Factory in Divulapitiya. I attended the interview with a lot of hope. You can imagine my feeling when I learnt that I was selected along with a few others as a helper on a monthly salary of Rs.10,000/-. My employers are providing me with meals and accommodation too.”
Prasad shares with pride, “I showed interest in my work. I worked hard to meet the company standards. In no time the Management promoted me to the position of Machine Operator.”
Happy in life and work, Prasad adds, “I have now opened a savings bank account into which I deposit my salary every month. My goal is to build a new house for myself and my parents.”
Leonard Cheshire are successfully supporting through LRCs (Livelihood Resource Centres) in Sri Lanka where people with disability are identified and guided to choose their occupations. With a good training from LRC, people with disabilities are able to attend interviews and get placements. Some have even set up their own small enterprises and self-employed. Leonard Cheshire’s LRCs are offering their services in India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, the Philippines and South Africa too. LRCs are doing remarkable work among the disabled enabling them to enjoy a good social and economic life. Leonard Cheshire Disability is supported by Accenture Foundation in this noble venture.