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Sri Lankas Regional Chambers of Commerce Network for Conflict Transformation, Reconciliation, Regional Empowerment and Corporate Social Responsibility.

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Presentation on theme: "Sri Lankas Regional Chambers of Commerce Network for Conflict Transformation, Reconciliation, Regional Empowerment and Corporate Social Responsibility."— Presentation transcript:

1 Sri Lankas Regional Chambers of Commerce Network for Conflict Transformation, Reconciliation, Regional Empowerment and Corporate Social Responsibility Copyright 2009 © The Business for Peace Alliance Partnering for Progress

2 Network owned and operated by 23 Regional Chambers of Commerce throughout Sri Lanka. Network owned and operated by 23 Regional Chambers of Commerce throughout Sri Lanka. A bottom up regional platform to bring about regional empowerment, reconciliation, national unity and the practice of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR). A bottom up regional platform to bring about regional empowerment, reconciliation, national unity and the practice of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR). A bottom up lobby for aspirations of regional Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs), with capacity to understand and develop regional solutions for regional problems. A bottom up lobby for aspirations of regional Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs), with capacity to understand and develop regional solutions for regional problems. Works with partners to deliver regional development programs, and promotes business as a means to bring about more prosperous and peaceable communities. Works with partners to deliver regional development programs, and promotes business as a means to bring about more prosperous and peaceable communities. Promotes Public-Private-People Partnerships for sustainable regional development. Promotes Public-Private-People Partnerships for sustainable regional development. Copyright 2009 © The Business for Peace Alliance

3 Started in 2002 as an informal network of influential members of the regional Chambers of Commerce, to create a platform for business to contribute towards the peace process, bringing advantage to both business and regional communities. Started in 2002 as an informal network of influential members of the regional Chambers of Commerce, to create a platform for business to contribute towards the peace process, bringing advantage to both business and regional communities. Success of the network led to institutionalization of BPA in 2006, with a Secretariat being established in Colombo as a focal point for regional business. Success of the network led to institutionalization of BPA in 2006, with a Secretariat being established in Colombo as a focal point for regional business. Incorporated in 2006 as a Not for Profit Company Limited by Guarantee under the Registrar of Companies of Sri Lanka. Incorporated in 2006 as a Not for Profit Company Limited by Guarantee under the Registrar of Companies of Sri Lanka. Exclusively governed by a Board of Directors from 23 Regional Chambers representing every province in Sri Lanka. Exclusively governed by a Board of Directors from 23 Regional Chambers representing every province in Sri Lanka. Guided by several highly respected business leaders and professionals from Colombo. Guided by several highly respected business leaders and professionals from Colombo. Copyright 2009 © The Business for Peace Alliance

4 23 Board Members 23 Board Members 25 Regional Chambers 25 Regional Chambers 3 Womens Chambers 3 Womens Chambers 15,000 Members 15,000 Members

5 Commerce (as represented by Regional Chambers) Peace Conflict transformation Conflict transformation Lobbying & advocacy Lobbying & advocacy Networking & sharing good practice Networking & sharing good practice Influencing & engaging stakeholders Influencing & engaging stakeholders Improving understanding & awareness Improving understanding & awareness Regional empowerment Regional empowerment Building capacity Building capacity Sustainability & funds Sustainability & funds Securing livelihoods Securing livelihoods Copyright 2009 © The Business for Peace Alliance

6 Conduit between national and regional policy makers, BPA complements the regions own efforts to bring about greater levels of empowerment and opportunity to the regions via the Chambers of Commerce.

7 Copyright 2009 © The Business for Peace Alliance

8 Reconciliation Committees Networking Regional Business for Conflict Transformation. Networking Regional Business for Conflict Transformation. Business leadership for Community leaders to network. Business leadership for Community leaders to network. Early warning system – prevention of conflict. Early warning system – prevention of conflict. Mitigate escalation of conflict. Mitigate escalation of conflict. Peace Building activities - multi ethnic, multi religious festivals, trade fairs…. Peace Building activities - multi ethnic, multi religious festivals, trade fairs…. Copyright 2009 © The Business for Peace Alliance

9 Peace through Empowerment Peace & Conflict from a Regional Empowerment Perspective in Sri Lanka. Peace & Conflict from a Regional Empowerment Perspective in Sri Lanka. Increase awareness of conflict on the ground. Increase awareness of conflict on the ground. Awareness of need for sharing of power at regional level for regional empowerment. Awareness of need for sharing of power at regional level for regional empowerment. Awareness programs on issues such as the New Companies Act and the New Electricity Act. Awareness programs on issues such as the New Companies Act and the New Electricity Act. Communication skills for better understanding. Communication skills for better understanding. Copyright 2009 © The Business for Peace Alliance

10 Building the Capacity of Regions BPA runs best practice workshops involving representatives from all regions. BPA runs best practice workshops involving representatives from all regions. Reconciliation among communities. Reconciliation among communities. Sharing experiences in income generation. Sharing experiences in income generation. Communication and presentation skills. Communication and presentation skills. Bridging the gap between the center and the regions for sustainable and equitable socio-economic development in the country. Bridging the gap between the center and the regions for sustainable and equitable socio-economic development in the country. Copyright 2009 © The Business for Peace Alliance

11 BizPAct : Engagement with Big business and the Diaspora Links with Sri Lankan diaspora in Australia, UK, Germany, UAE and USA. Links with Sri Lankan diaspora in Australia, UK, Germany, UAE and USA. Creating a platform to allow big business to partner in regional investment an development in a context sensitive, responsible and sustainable manner. Creating a platform to allow big business to partner in regional investment an development in a context sensitive, responsible and sustainable manner. Diaspora to develop a stronger understanding of the context in Sri Lankas regions and helping to dispel some of the polarised perspectives of this influential community. Diaspora to develop a stronger understanding of the context in Sri Lankas regions and helping to dispel some of the polarised perspectives of this influential community. Copyright 2009 © The Business for Peace Alliance

12 Learn & Lead: A multi-stakeholder CSR initiative implemented by BPA with the support of an imminent National Steering Committee. A multi-stakeholder CSR initiative implemented by BPA with the support of an imminent National Steering Committee. Understanding regional youth aspirations and providing opportunities for developing future leaders from the regions. Understanding regional youth aspirations and providing opportunities for developing future leaders from the regions. Scholarship scheme for outstanding students from regions affected by conflict and poverty to obtain a comprehensive education in leading private schools. Scholarship scheme for outstanding students from regions affected by conflict and poverty to obtain a comprehensive education in leading private schools. Leadership skills development workshops in a multi-ethnic environment for youth in the regions. Leadership skills development workshops in a multi-ethnic environment for youth in the regions. Copyright 2009 © The Business for Peace Alliance

13 Promoting Small & Medium Enterprises (SMEs) Strengthening links with local and national media to promote regional small and medium entrepreneurs and enterprises through the media and the internet. Strengthening links with local and national media to promote regional small and medium entrepreneurs and enterprises through the media and the internet. Regional Business Directory – publication of profiles of regional businesses across the country. Regional Business Directory – publication of profiles of regional businesses across the country. Collaboration with the Association of Small and Medium Enterprises in Tourism Sri Lanka. Collaboration with the Association of Small and Medium Enterprises in Tourism Sri Lanka. Investment promotion through programs such as BizPAct. Investment promotion through programs such as BizPAct. Copyright 2009 © The Business for Peace Alliance

14 Advocacy between the top and bottom Constitutional Reforms Constitutional Reforms Budget Proposals Budget Proposals Voice of Regions Newsletter Voice of Regions Newsletter Media and internet Media and internet Symposia and workshops island wide Symposia and workshops island wide Understanding the New Companies Act and Electricity Act Understanding the New Companies Act and Electricity Act Understanding Labor laws and Taxation Understanding Labor laws and Taxation Copyright 2009 © The Business for Peace Alliance

15 Rewarding business for contribution to National Unity The Business for Unity Awards ceremony organised by the Central Province Chamber of Commerce and Industry with the support of International Alert and BPA. Paying tribute to regional business leaders for their commitment to Corporate Social Responsibility and their personal contribution to foster unity amongst diverse ethnic and social groups in their communities and the country. Copyright 2009 © The Business for Peace Alliance

16 Rebuilding Sri Lanka - Post War Action Support to IDPs. Support to IDPs. Milk food and medical assistance to women and children in hospitals in Vavuniya and Trincomalee. Milk food and medical assistance to women and children in hospitals in Vavuniya and Trincomalee. Supply of essential items to camps in Vavuniya. Supply of essential items to camps in Vavuniya. Support to children in camps in Vavuniya. Support to children in camps in Vavuniya. Livelihood development for future. Livelihood development for future. Language for livelihood. Language for livelihood. Reintegration of ex combatants - transform ex combatants into entrepreneurs - business skills, linking with chambers and mentoring by senior regional businessmen. Reintegration of ex combatants - transform ex combatants into entrepreneurs - business skills, linking with chambers and mentoring by senior regional businessmen. Learn and Lead scholarships. Learn and Lead scholarships. Copyright 2009 © The Business for Peace Alliance

17 Directors 23 – scattered all over the country, financial and time commitments to own districts and chambers, lack of expertise, experience and sophistication, less links with national policy makers and high level stake holders based in Colombo. Directors 23 – scattered all over the country, financial and time commitments to own districts and chambers, lack of expertise, experience and sophistication, less links with national policy makers and high level stake holders based in Colombo. Partnerships – Public, Private, People. Partnerships – Public, Private, People. Steering Committees with external experts – Board Development, Legal, Finance and Audit, Learn and Lead, Enterprise Steering Committee. Steering Committees with external experts – Board Development, Legal, Finance and Audit, Learn and Lead, Enterprise Steering Committee. Staff mostly regional – lack of English skills and exposure with high level stakeholders based in Colombo. Staff mostly regional – lack of English skills and exposure with high level stakeholders based in Colombo. Keeping island wide network actively informed and engaged – Communication. Keeping island wide network actively informed and engaged – Communication. Core funding to maintain and develop the Secretariat. Core funding to maintain and develop the Secretariat. Income generating programs – Need seed money to develop BizPAct, a Chamber/Business Support Services Unit and Voice of Regions Newsletter/Magazine. Income generating programs – Need seed money to develop BizPAct, a Chamber/Business Support Services Unit and Voice of Regions Newsletter/Magazine. Copyright 2009 © The Business for Peace Alliance

18 Regional Empowerment: Bringing ownership and active participation in regional development by the people of the regions while giving space for these entrepreneurs to develop confidence in ones own capacity. Regional Empowerment: Bringing ownership and active participation in regional development by the people of the regions while giving space for these entrepreneurs to develop confidence in ones own capacity. Creating responsible leaders and stakeholders of society with the capacity to change attitudes conducive for sustainable development and peace. Creating responsible leaders and stakeholders of society with the capacity to change attitudes conducive for sustainable development and peace. Conflict Transformation and Reconciliation: Social cohesion through commerce to break through barriers of geography, race, religion, class, caste and creed for a peaceful and prosperous Sri Lanka. Conflict Transformation and Reconciliation: Social cohesion through commerce to break through barriers of geography, race, religion, class, caste and creed for a peaceful and prosperous Sri Lanka. Philanthropy and CSR: Going beyond charity to create social value - giving a hand-up as opposed to a hand-out. Philanthropy and CSR: Going beyond charity to create social value - giving a hand-up as opposed to a hand-out. Copyright 2009 © The Business for Peace Alliance

19 People – Public - Private - Partnerships Copyright 2009 © The Business for Peace Alliance


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