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Nature Conservation Society (NCS) Sri Lanka

Updated: June 2010

Registration-No.: 6/6/17/9/26 (CEA, Sri Lanka)

No. 41 Devala Road, Kaluwamodara, Aluthgama Sri Lanka + 94 34 3305100 (Office) + 94 777 807674 (Chairman) ncs_lanka@yahoo.com, ncs@naturevolunteers.com www.naturevolunteers.com

NCS Profile
Introduction
The Tsunami disaster in December 2004 destroyed the complete livelihood of many people in Sri Lanka. A lot of them lost their families, homes and working places. In the following time many organisations started to support the reconstruction of the destroyed regions financially, with material and manpower. But the support has decreased and many helpers left Sri Lanka a long time ago. Still, the problems of the country remain. Especially when it comes to environmental and educational issues, there's a serious lack of sustainable projects. To face these problems and needs the Nature Conservation Society (NCS) - Sri Lanka was established in August 2005 and officially registered by the Central Environmental Authority (CEA) as a non-profit environmental organisation in Sri Lanka in February 2006. Wildlife extermination, soil depletion, deforestation, waste dumping, water pollution due to the draining of sewage into rivers and the ocean, air pollution, coral mining, etc. (see picture 1 to 4 below) - these environmental issues are common in developing countries and result mostly of ignorance or financial problems of the locals, but also of high population numbers and economic growth. The effect is not only a danger for the nature but also threatens the health of the population (e.g. by the poor water quality) and causes a low life expectancy. So due to unawareness and poverty, mankind in Sri Lanka is destroying its own livelihood.

1. River with Waste water

2. Coral mining

3. Garbage dumping

4. Air pollution

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Nature Conservation Society (NCS)

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NCS Profile
Aims and Objectives
The NCS wants to help saving the unique nature and creating a healthy environment for the local communities. To overcome the current problems, a fundamental understanding of nature and wildlife conservation on one hand and of human needs on the other hand has to be developed. To care for the environment and the nature means also to care about the people who live in it - because one can not live without the other and both are influencing the other respectively. In order to achieve our aims and objectives, the NCS is following different ways : 1.Awareness to the population as well as to visitors concerning the topics endangered nature and animal species, sustainable treatment of natural resources, general nature conservation and health 2.Education by an efficient environmental education programme for young people to increase the environmental awareness. Furthermore, free education of children from economically weak and disadvantaged families in rural areas e.g. with lessons in English and computer skills. Special programmes for women e.g. about women's rights and alternative income can help to increase their quality of life and the future for the family. 3.Active conservation by the invention and institution of eco-friendly solutions for everyday life as well as by the implementation of activities in the field of nature conservation in cooperation (e.g., the collecting of waste at the beach) with the population, schools and other institutions. 3.International cooperation by cooperation with local and international organisations and institutions as well as the integration of local and foreign voluntary workers in daily work (see 'Nature Volunteers')

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NCS Profile
The Board of Directors
The Board of Directors is elected by the Members of the organisation for a two years. The Board is ultimately responsible for the management of the society. The Board consists of an elected Chairman and two other Directors, which will be mentioned below: Chairman Mr. Chandralal Premakumara M.G. (Manager) Secretary - Neil Rupasinghe (Lawyer) Treasurer - Andrea Launhardt (Environmental Engineer Dipl. Ing.) All Directors operate in a voluntary capacity. They meet at least once a month.

Members
Currently the NCS have 65 local and 12 foreign members, which function in an active or supportive way. Besides the official members of the organisation, the NCS is supported by local and foreign volunteers as well as the local community, especially if middle or big scale projects are planned. All members and helper of the NCS working free of charge and invest their time and manpower towards the aims of the organisation, to support the environment and the local community.

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NCS Profile
Organisational network and Interactions
The NCS is not an isolated organisation - it is a part of a network between the local community, partner organisations and private persons as well as our own institution EDC (Education Development Centre) and sub-organisations NV (Nature Volunteers Association) and the Green Pioneer Team which are interacting with each other. A structure of this network is shown in diagram 1 below. Local Community Partner Organisations

NCS

NV

Green Pioneer Team

EDC

Diagram 1: Structure of network and interactions of the NCS (NCS- Nature Conservation Society, NV- Nature Volunteers Association, EDC- Eduaction Development Centre)

Centre of the network is the NCS, which is in interaction with all other elements shown whereas the local community has the major impact. While the cooperation with partner organisations is manly towards the NCS and NV, the support of the NV is going to all institution and the local community. Further is shown that the main input to the educational centre (EDC) is coming from the local community (the children), but the efforts come from the NCS and NV. Former students of the EDC has build the Green Pioneer Team, which is on the other hand supporting the NCS and the local community.

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NCS Profile
Education Development Centre (EDC)
The Education Development Centre (EDC) is the central institution of the NCS. It has an educational unit with the NCS office as well as a living and working area for the volunteers of the Nature Volunteers Association (NV). The construction of the EDC was initiated and sponsored by Gazprom Germania GmbH, Berlin (one-time funding) and realized in cooperation with the Nature Conservation Society (NCS) Sri Lanka. Only a few months after the start of construction, the centre was opened at May, 27th 2006. At that date, the management and the supervision of the project was handed over to the NCS. Concerning the objectives of the NCS the EDC has the following two main aims: 1) The overcoming of financial grievance: Local children and teenagers can participate in free courses in English and computer skills (length: six months) in the EDC. If they complete the course successfully, the students will receive an official certificate attesting their effort, which will increase their chance for a good job. Furthermore, it is planned that women can learn different handicraft skills in the EDC in order to be able to earn money for themselves and their families. 2) Environmental protection by environmental education: The education centre is the initial point of a considerable programme of environmental education. This programme shall strengthen the environmental awareness of the local population and thereby form a base for a sustainable and successful environmental protection. As part of the awareness programme following educational activities are implemented: lectures, film shown, workshops and other events. Alongside the members of the NCS and the volunteers, experts and members of other organisations are integrated in the projects. New projects concerning environmental protection, as the usage of renewable resources or the alternative generation of energy, and approaches for big environmental problems in Sri Lanka, as the lack of an efficient waste management or the water pollution, are planned for the years to come.

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NCS Profile
The location The EDC is situated in Aluthgama, a small town in Sri Lanka's southwest - about 70 km south of the capital Colombo and 40 km north of the city Galle on the southern tip of the island. The building The building ensures efficient and well-prepared education and is at the same time the home and a place for intercultural encounters of the local and foreign volunteers, helpers and guests. The class rooms and the working area is located on the ground floor. There is the lobby, the office, a computer cabinet, a library, a volunteers office and a lecture room as well as the toilets for the children. On first floor, there is the living are with a living room as well as the kitchen, the dining area, a big bathroom, three staff rooms and three double bedrooms for the volunteers as well as for guests.

The children The students of the EDC come from the adjacencies. As the children are from Tsunami affected or low income families the courses are free of charge and offer a possibility to improve the education they get at school. For the computer classes, mainly older children are selected (age 12 to 21 years), because they are close to start into the professional life, where they can use their newly learned skills immediately. The English classes do not have an agerestriction.

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NCS Profile
Nature Volunteers Association (NV) Sri Lanka
In June 2006, the programme of the "Nature Volunteers" was started by the Nature Conservation Society (NCS), Sri Lanka. It was registered as "Nature Volunteers Association" in December 2006. "Nature Volunteers" is a volunteering programme in Sri Lanka for voluntary helper, volunteering tourists, trainees, students and interested people that want to participate in and support nature and community beneficial projects, including environmental awareness programmes as well as wildlife conservation and social activities. The "Nature Volunteers" are involved in programmes and activities relating to children's education and welfare, community development, environmental care, disaster relief, general welfare, etc., partly in cooperation with other organisations (e.g. NGO's) and institutions (e.g. homes for the elderly). The focus of these programmes lies on environmental education and awareness, nature and wildlife conservation as well as on community based work (e.g. teaching and social care) and project management. Most of the environmental and community based work is also supported from the Green Pioneers Team, a group of former and current students of the EDC interest in environmental activities, as well as local volunteers

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NCS Profile

Running Projects
All projects of the NCS are supported by the work of the Nature Volunteers (locals and foreign). In the majority the projects are initiated by the NCS, but the society also supports partner organisations and local institutions like schools . Ongoing projects (samples) are listed below and described in short: English and Computer Lessons A team of 5 local teachers are running classes in English, Computer, Environmental Education and Graphic Design . Utilising the support of the volunteer team on a number of afternoons, and evenings lessons were completed for a variety of ages and abilities in spoken English. German Lessons - With a strong German representation in the volunteer team it was natural to also offer spoken German lessons after request from the students Mangrove Replanting The creation of and maintenance thereafter of a small Mangrove Nursery adjacent to the EDC has allowed for an increase of effectiveness in Mangrove reforestation, one of the main environmental projects of the NCS. A weekly collection of juvenile plants has been underway all year, and the Volunteers continue to maintain a healthy stock of viable plants. During the year NCS members, Nature Volunteers accompanied by the Green Pioneers group are replanting several 1000 saplings . Beach Cleaning Waste is one of the major problems in Sri Lanka. A place where it is commonly found and a disturbance for tourists is the beach. Therefore, the NCS is concentration their efforts in a clean environment to those places. Nature Volunteers, EDC students and Green Pioneers have been able to partake in beach cleaning activities on both a small and large scale. During the past years

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NCS Profile
The following projects from partner organisanisations and institutions were supported from the NCS and NV (samples): Turtle Conservation Nature Volunteers have been supporting theTurtle Conservation Project by supplying manpower each week to assist the project team. Dog Care Centre Also Nature Volunteers has supported the Dog Care Project in Talpe by allowing members of the Volunteer group to assist in the day to day running of the Dog Care clinic. Montessori Support A closely Montessori is supported by the volunteers with pre-school planning learning activities and basic English lessons several days mornings each week. Orphanage Programme A number of the volunteer team have spent time in a local orphanage in Beruwala providing some basic English teaching as well as social support to the girls there.

Planned Projects
Besides the ongoing projects run by the NCS with support of the NV further projects and programms are planned in order to meet the objectives of the NCS and support the local community . These projects are listed as follows: Women handicraft project and ways of alternative income Strenghten of Womens rights with presentations, talks and film shows Alternative ways of cooking with solar energy (solar cooker) Ecofriedly tourist travels and service Cooperation projects with parter organisations: "Bentota River Waste Management System" planned by INSOU, in cooperation with BREDS Reforestration the the Singharaja Rainforst - planned from OARM Ecological tourism in the Singhataja Rainforst area planned from LCCBO Ecological aggriculture and farmimg planned from the Society of Ecological Agriculture, University of Peradeniya Update June 2010 Nature Conservation Society (NCS) Page - 10 -

NCS Profile

International Partner organisations


ADIUVO e.V. (Germany) International Network in Support of Organised Development Initiatives (INSOU) LOTUS international e.V. (Germany) Womens cooperation international (Austria)

Local Partner organisations


Bentota River Environment Development Society (BREDS) Deiherm Organisation Low Country C.B.O. Consortium (LCCBO) Turtle Conservation Project (TCP) Organization for Aquatic Resources Management (OARM) Pahalage Orphanage, Beruwala Society of Ecological Agriculture, University of Peradeniya Vier Pfoten Dog Care Clinic e.V. (Germany/Sri Lanka, Talpe)

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NCS Profile

Resume
The Nature Conservation Society (NCS) is active since their establishment in 2005. At the beginning small projects were realised , while the biggest project building and development of the Education Development Centre (EDC) could be finished in 2006. The biggest focus of the EDC is providing free education to those most affected by the immediate and longer term consequences of 2004s catastrophic tsunami as well as low income families. Since its inception in 2006 the EDC has been able to support an increasing number of students with free English, and Computer courses and during 2009 was able to provide education to over 250 students, bringing the cumulative total so far to over 600 students. 2010 the EDC was able to implement also Graphical design lessons for students who finished the computer course before successfully. As the second major development of the NCS, the establishment of the Nature Volunteers Association has become a important support of the work of the NCS as well as partner organisations and other local institutions. Local and foreign volunteers working together. From beginning of the NV in 2006 till now about 75 local and 44 foreign volunteers joint programme from single days (locals) up to 1 year (foreign). The NCS will maintain and develop their current projects - especially the education, mangrove replanting and beach cleaning - but invest further efforts and energy to implement new and valuable projects for the environment and the local community. To solve major environmental issues like waste dumping a cooperation of several organisations , policy makers, but mostly the cooperation and support of the local community is necessary .

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