Category Archives: Employment for Persons with Disabilities



The Employers’ Network on Disability supports persons with disabilities to find employment in private sector companies. In October 2018 Shangri-La Hotel recruited 4 trainees with diverse disabilities from The Employers’ Federation of Ceylon training centre.


Manique Gunaratne

Executive Committee Member – Disability Organisations’ Joint Front


In January 2012 Ms. Manique Gunaratne from The Employers’ Federation of Ceylon attended the Inclusive Business Roundtable Talk on Rating System in Bangkok, Thailand,at APCD Training Building.

The concept of Inclusive Business has been brainstormed by business practitioners and leaders with disabilities. The roles of persons with disabilities in business were identified more clearly from the perspective of customers, employees and entrepreneurs. The inclusive business opportunity to expand market and utilize the potential human resources was highlighted. The key points of successful inclusive business were presented. Through the brainstorming meeting, participants agreed that the Rating System would be needed for Inclusive Business Development.

The Inclusive Business Roundtable Talk on Rating System was organized by the Asia-Pacific Development Center on Disability (APCD) and The Nippon Foundation (TNF) Exclusive participants discussed more deeply about Rating System of Inclusive Business. It is expected that the findings from regional perspective will support business to maximize emerging business opportunity.


Manique Gunaratne

Council Member – Cisco Networking Academy Council


It is very important to have an inclusive workplace for a sustainable Enterprise. Ms. Manique Gunaratne sensitized the employers on inclusive workplace, disability etiquettes, accessibility, reasonable accommodation, management responsibilities and on laws, policies and facilities available for persons with disabilities at the HR (Human Resource) Diploma conducted by The Employers’ Federation of Ceylon in August 2018.


Picture descriptions for vision impaired persons:

1 Manique conducting the session.

2 Participants practicing disability etiquettes.


Manique Gunaratne

Member – Internet Society Sri Lanka Chapter


A group of 13 persons with diverse disabilities (vision impaired, partially sighted, hearing impaired, physical disabilities, slow learners and persons with speech difficulties) successfully completed a course of study in Soft Skills at The Employers’ Federation of Ceylon, Specialised Training & Disability Resource Centre in August 2018. In order to secure employment in the private sector it is very important to develop the soft skills of persons with disabilities. Persons with disabilities were trained in:

Motivational Session:

Who am I and what gifts do I bring.

Why am I following this course?

Sharing expectations.

Where am I now and where do I want to be at the end of the course.

Team building and the power of a Team.

Independence and control of my future.

The value of Time and managing it.

What are the different areas of our life and how do we balance it.

What is the Corporate World or what the world of work that I am in is or that I want to be in.

Personal Grooming and Etiquette

From hygiene matters through to Fashion in terms of personal Grooming

Basic etiquette

Handshake through to making conversation at business meetings and table manners

First Impressions and lasting impressions

Workplace Etiquette

What to do and what not to do at the work place and understanding the culture of the work


Developing inter-personal skills, how to get along with others

Interpersonal Communication

The use of our voice to create the desired impression and questions to ascertain correct


Telephone etiquette – Communicating on the phone

Building Confidence

Making presentations and speeches, expressing one’s opinion at meetings

Body language

It is important as persons with disabilities may not understand the importance of posture,

Gestures, use of space etc.

Voice for effective communication

How to vary volume, Tone, Rate of Speech, Quality of voice, according to the context

Subjects of conversation appropriate for different situations

Structuring communication

The main areas of communication and how to

Structure their communication

Practical experience of table manners, office environment and hotel environment through a field visits to an office and a five star hotel.


Practical session on interview skills.

The resource persons were Mr. Dhananjaya Jayakody, Ms. Erosha Fernando, Mr. Rimaz Rizwie, Ms. Shamala Dulanjali, Ms. Rochelle Wandort, Ms. Sonali De Silva, Ms. Sewwandi Jayatunge, Mr. Udaya Ratnayake, Ms. Isuru Perera, Dr. Chandrathilake, Ms. Yashoravi Bakmeewewa, Mr. Suranga Samarasinghe, Mr. Pradeep Gunaratne, Mr. Chamith Jayasanka, Ms. Manique Gunaratne and Ms. Ayasana Gunasekera.

The Soft Skills training was conducted with the support of The Employers’ Federation of Ceylon, Nestle Lanka, Diesel & Motor Engineering PLC, Sri Lankan Catering, Avery Denison Lanka, Jetwing Blue Hotel and National Institute of Mental Health.


Picture descriptions for vision impaired persons:

1 Dhananjaya conducting the session.

2 Participants.

3 Resource persons conducting the personal grooming session.

4 Teaching to ware saree.

5 Training table etiquettes.

6 Participants.

7 Sonali conducting the session.

8 Manique speaking.

9 Sewwandi conducting the session.

10 Participants enjoying a vedio.

11 Udaya conducting the session.

12 Sign language interpretation.

13 Isuru conducting the session.

14 Group of trainees.

15 Dr. Chandrathilake conducting the session.

16 Dr. Chandrathilake, Manique and Piyalatha.

17 Yashoravi conducting the session.

18 Group of trainees.

19 Dining ettiquets training.

20 Group photograph.

21 Pradeep conducting the session.

22 Participants.

23 Manique presenting.

24 Group photograph.

Manique Gunaratne

Resource Person – Beyond the Reach Project of Internet Society Sri Lanka Chapter




People who live with disabilities often face fear, discomfort, and hostility at a rate that far exceeds that encountered by those who do have no disability.

The vast majority of such treatment is rooted in a basic lack of understanding about the challenges that come with having a disability, and the experience

Of sharing the world with people who do not. People often seek to fill in gaps in their knowledge, and when information is lacking, confusion and even

Fear may result.


Anyone wishing to overcome this experience in them will be best served by first recognizing that a disability is a limited phenomenon. A physical

Disability may have a large impact on how an individual interacts with the physical word. A sensory disability may alter the gathering of information.

These are conditions however; in no way prevent the individuals who live with them from having unique personalities, talents, knowledge, humor, and lives.

People who live with disabilities have more in common than not with those who have no disability. We all share the same existence, and the same basic needs.


In other cases, people who are living with a disability

May have feelings about language that is not in keeping with the established guidelines for etiquette. Whatever the reason, the commonly recognized best

Practices of disability-related etiquette may not always be the preferred practices, and it is always most important for the most effective and respectful


We are all persons with disabilities at some time in our lives. A child, a person with a broken leg, a parent with a pram, pregnant mother, an elderly person, etc. are all disabled in one way or another. Those who remain healthy and able-bodied all their lives are few. As far as the built-up environment is concerned, it is important that it should be barrier-free And adapted to fulfill the needs of all people equally. As a matter of fact, the needs of the persons with disabilities coincide with the needs of the majority, and all

People are at ease with them. As such, planning for the majority implies planning for people with varying abilities and disabilities.


The technical aim of these programmes are to provide a barrier-free

Environment for the independence, convenience and safety of all people with disabilities and persons with not yet with a disability.


Disability etiquettes and accessibility has been a huge challenge for people with disabilities. This includes customers as well as employees. Therefore, it is important Employers to sensitize your staff on disability etiquettes and on accessibility. Please make sure that at least few staff members are sensitized on above matter to treat your customers with dignity and justice.


Therefore, we are in a position to do the following programmes at your premises to teach disability etiquette, Access audits, reasonable accommodation the right way to handle persons with disabilities and also train them in accessibility measures for the workplace.


Ms. Manique Gunaratne of The Employers’ Federation of Ceylon, Specialised Training & Disability Resource Centre together with Ms. Ayasana Gunasekera, Mr. Santhush Peris and Mr. Chamod Nayanananda  recently conducted all above programmes at a leading bank in Sri Lanka in June 2018 to make a disabled friendly environment with dignity and justice for all.


Picture descriptions for vision impaired persons:

Manique, Ayasana, Santhush and Chamod.

Manique Gunaratne

Viber: 0094779571918


The Employers’ Federation of Ceylon Specialised Training & Disability Resource Centre is conducting Soft Skills training for persons with diverse disabilities (persons with vision impairment, persons with hearing impairment, persons with speech difficulties, slow learners, persons with physical disabilities, wheel chair users and partially sighted persons). The module on Office and table etiquettes was conducted by Jetwing Hotels at Jetwing Blue Hotel in Negombo in June 2018. Persons with disabilities got the opportunity to learn the proper method of dining etiquettes.


Picture descriptions for vision impaired persons:

1 At the beach.

2 Sign language interpretations.

3 Chandima thanking the trainers.

4 Training on how to have a 3 course meal.

5 Group photograph.

6 Training on office etiquettes.

7 Having the main meal.

8 Training on dining etiquettes.

9 Journey to Jetwing Blue Hotel.


10 Manique presenting.

11 Briefing by the hotel for the participants.

Manique Gunaratne



Read the article:

Employers’ Federation of Ceylon’s Network on Disability celebrates ICT Graduation

“When we talk of sustainable enterprises, we need to assure that no one in society is left behind. The Employers’ Network on Disability of the Employers’ Federation of Ceylon (EFC) – which champions this notion was set up way back in 1999 – is a reflection of the foresight of my predecessors of the requirements in the ever-evolving world of work,” observed the Director General of the EFC, Kanishka Weerasinghe.

Manique Gunaratne

Mobile – 0094779571918


UN Women commissioned a research to CENWOR on “Strengthening Gender Responsiveness of Employment Sector Policies and Programmes: A Focus on women with disabilities. In relation to this study CENWOR together with UN Women India trained the women collectives, who are actively working for women with disabilities, to claim their rights on employment using gender responsive framework. In order to give an introduction to GRB, CENWOR conducted a basic training on GRB in February 2018 at CENWOR Auditorium.

Dr. Swapna Bist Joshi, who has more than ten years of progressive and diverse experience in the field of development research with focus on public policy and expenditure and expert in Gender Responsive Budgeting (GRB), Gender Mainstreaming and Trainings, was the resource person.

Ms. Manique Gunaratne and Ms. Ayasana Gunasekera from The Employers’ Federation of Ceylon, Specialised Training & Disability Resource Centre participated to contribute to employment for women with disabilities.


Picture description for vision impaired persons:

1 Attending the session.

2 Participants.

Manique Gunaratne

Vice President – Rehab Lanka Sports Club for Persons with Disabilities