Tag Archives: #STDRC

EMPLOYMENT FOR PERSONS WITH DISABILITIES

Established in 1929, the Employers’ Federation of Ceylon (EFC) is the national employers’ organisation in Sri Lanka. Over the years, we have committed ourselves to adapting to the requirements of a dynamic membership to promote productive employment and social harmony.
The Employers Network on Disability was formed by the EFC with the objective of facilitating employment and training opportunities for persons with disabilities in the private sector. Officially launched in 1999, the initiative was supported by the International Labour Organisation. Since then the network is actively serving its purpose by strengthening the link between organisations dealing with disability-related issues, the business community and persons with disabilities.

The Specialised Training & Disability Resource Centre was established in 2009 with the objective of training persons with diverse disabilities and developing their employability skills. We play a key role in advocacy and lobbying for the rights of persons with diverse disabilities and our aim is to promote inclusive economic development in all parts of the country thus creating long term sustainable employment and livelihoods for persons with disabilities.

Coats Thread Exports PLC, a member company of EFC provides employment opportunities for persons with disabilities. Ms. Pramokshi Fernando with a physical disability was recruited making Coats Thread Exports PLC an inclusive workplace in 2021.

Discussion on employment opportunity
Discussion on employment opportunity
Discussion on employment opportunity
Discussion on employment opportunity
Discussion on employment opportunity
Discussion on employment opportunity

MANIQUE GUNARATNE
Member of the National Council for Persons with Disabilities

BASIC SIGN LANGUAGE TRAINING

Companies spend a significant amount of money developing staff, whether it is on team-building days, attending conferences or enhancing technical skills such as coding languages. Part of the budget should go towards honing soft skills to nurture a positive culture among the workforce. While additional forms of training might involve presentations, role-plays, and task-based problem-solving, companies may not have considered basic sign language to complement the existing training provision. Yet, there are ample reasons to support implementing Basic Sign Language training as part of the staff’s ongoing professional development due to following reasons:

01. Your customers will thank you:
There is a lot of buzz around the area of customer experience. While many Managers are busy mapping customer interactions and implementing email automation, some people will find it harder to access your perfectly designed customer journey. If your team embers can understand the barriers and communicate with a hard of hearing or deaf customer, that person will gain a positive experience of your company. You benefit from increased customer opportunities and accessing a new market by understanding how to make your promotions and offers more accessible, increasing sales.

02. Your workforce will be more inclusive:
If someone joins the team who is hard of hearing or deaf and communicates in sign language, they will feel more included if staff members have some knowledge of sign language. The team will also feel more confident in approaching their deaf teammates.

03. Supporting each other:
If you include sign language training as part of your workplace development programme, it could be fun to foster a “sign language only” the hour in the afternoon where those who need to speak to each other can sign. This will give hearing members of staff the chance to practice their new skills with each other and deaf colleagues the opportunity to offer support and be more fully involved in their team’s development.

04. A chance to develop empathy:
One of the most important soft skills you can adopt in the workplace is empathy. Learning sign language or any other language is a fast track to becoming more empathic. As a language learner, the struggles that come with not being able to communicate fluently mean you experience a sense of humility. This means that, if someone joins the team whose first language is not English, co-workers will know to adapt their speech and gesturing to help the newcomer understand better.

05. Improving non-verbal communication skills:
Important non-verbal signals can be frustrating. Being able to read another’s body language helps you know your next move in a business situation, so honing those skills is vital for a successful outcome. By learning sign language, your team will improve their ability to pick up on non-verbal cues and will therefore become a better asset in the boardroom or on the sales floor.

These are just a few great reasons to implement Basic Sign Language training among the staff members in the companies. The Employers’ Federation of Ceylon, Specialised Training & Disability Resource Centre conducted training in Basic Sign Language from March to May 2021 for staff members of companies. Ms. Chammi Dias and Mr. Janaka Sampath were the Trainers for this certificate course.

Conducting the session
Conducting the session
Conducting the session
Conducting the session
Participants receiving certificate
Participants receiving certificate
Participant
Participant
Online training
Online training
Participants receiving certificate
Participants receiving certificate
Training session
Training session
Online training
Online training
Conducting the training
Conducting the training
Participants
Participants
Conducting the training
Conducting the training
Conducting the training
Conducting the training
Participants
Participants
Participants
Participants

MANIQUE GUNARATNE
Administrative Vice President – Internet Society Sri Lanka Chapter

ACCESS FOR ALL AT KAHATAGASDIGIRIYA PRADESHIYA SABHA

People with Disabilities are more likely than the general population to suffer anxiety, discomfort, and animosity. To a significant measure, such attitudes arise from a lack of understanding of disability and what it’s like to live in a world with individuals who do not share that experience. As a result, in Sri Lanka, in collaboration with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the European Union (EU) and the Employers’ Federation of Ceylon (EFC), the Specialised Training & Disability Resource Centre took the initiative to implement a project to provide recommendations on Disability Accessibility and Capacity Building of Local Government Authorities in Sri Lanka. The team from EFC led by #Manique Gunaratne, which included persons with diverse disabilities, did disability accessibility checking to give recommendations at Kahatagasdigiriya Pradeshiya Sabha, in Anuradhapura District,  in North Central Province in November 2021 to give recommendations on how to make the Kahatagasdigiriya Pradeshiya Sabha access for all. Two Advocacy Group discussions were held with persons with disabilities belonging to Kahatagasdigiriya Pradeshiya Sabha and staff members (persons with non-disabilities) of the Pradeshiya Sabha on having an inclusive approach when providing services which already exist.

Accessibility checking at the reception
Accessibility checking at the reception
Accessibility checking along the ramp
Accessibility checking along the ramp
Group photograph
Group photograph
Recommending parking slot
Recommending parking slot
Group photograph
Group photograph
Checking Library accessibility
Checking Library accessibility
Recommending parking area
Recommending parking area
Small Group Advocacy Discussion
Small-Group Advocacy Discussion
Small-Group Advocacy Discussion
Wheelchair user checking accessibility of the ramp
Wheelchair user checking the accessibility of the ramp
Accessibility checking along the ramp
Accessibility checking along the ramp
Pradeshiya Sabha Building
Pradeshiya Sabha Building
Small-Group Advocacy Discussion
Small-Group Advocacy Discussion
Small-Group Advocacy Discussion
Small-Group Advocacy Discussion
Wheelchair user checking accessibility of the ramp
Wheelchair user checking the accessibility of the ramp
Small-Group Advocacy Discussion
Small-Group Advocacy Discussion
Small-Group Advocacy Discussion
Small-Group Advocacy Discussion
Small-Group Advocacy Discussion

MANIQUE GUNARATNE
Manager – Specialise Training and Disability Resource Centre of The Employers’ Federation of Ceylon

ACCESS FOR ALL AT NUWARAGAM PALATHA EAST PRADESHIYA SABHA

People with disabilities are more likely than the general population to suffer anxiety, discomfort, and animosity. To a significant measure, such attitudes arise from a lack of understanding of disability and what it’s like to live in a world with individuals who do not share that experience. As a result, in Sri Lanka, collaboration with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the European Union (EU) and the Employers’ Federation of Ceylon (EFC), Specialised Training & Disability Resource Centre took the initiative to implement a project to provide recommendations on Disability Accessibility and Capacity Building of Local Government Authorities in Sri Lanka.

The team from EFC led by Manique Gunaratne which included persons with diverse disabilities did disability accessibility checking to give recommendations at Nuwaragam Palatha East Pradeshiya Sabha, in Anuradhapura district,  in North Central Province in November 2021 to give recommendations on how to make the Nuwaragam Palatha East Pradeshiya Sabha access for all. Two Advocacy Group discussions were held with persons with disabilities belonging to Nuwaragam Palatha East Pradeshiya Sabha and staff members (persons with non-disabilities) of the Pradeshiya Sabha on how to have an inclusive approach when providing services which already exists.

Nameboard of the PS Authority
Nameboard of the PS Authority
The team at the Entrance
The team at the Entrance
Team at the Reception Area
The team at the Reception Area
At the office area
At the office area
 The team at the Reception Area
The team at the Reception Area
Group Photograph
Group Photograph
The team at the entrance
The team at the entrance
Discussion with the staff members
Discussion with the staff members
Advocacy group discussion
Advocacy group discussion
Advocacy group discussion
Advocacy group discussion
At the reception
At the reception
At the pathway
At the pathway
Advocacy group discussion
Advocacy group discussion

MANIQUE GUNARATNE
Committee Member – SPRINT Committee of Family Planning Association

ACCESS FOR ALL AT RAMBAWA PRADESHIYA SABHA

People with disabilities are more likely than the general population to suffer anxiety, discomfort, and animosity. To a significant measure, such attitudes arise from a lack of understanding of disability and what it’s like to live in a world with individuals who do not share that experience. As a result, in Sri Lanka, in collaboration with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the European Union (EU) and the Employers’ Federation of Ceylon (EFC), the Specialised Training & Disability Resource Centre took the initiative to implement a project to provide recommendations on Disability Accessibility and Capacity Building of Local Government Authorities in Sri Lanka.

The team from EFC led by Manique Gunaratne which included persons with diverse disabilities did disability accessibility checking to give recommendations at Rambawa Pradeshiya Sabha, in Anuradhapura district,  in North Central Province in November 2021 to give recommendations on how to make the Rambawa Pradeshiya Sabha access for all. Two Advocacy Group discussions were held with persons with disabilities belonging to Rambawa Pradeshiya Sabha and staff members (persons with non-disabilities) of the Pradeshiya Sabha on how to have an inclusive approach when providing services that already exist.

Nameboard
Nameboard
Recommending accessibility at the entrance
Recommending accessibility at the entrance
Recommending accessibility in the office area
Recommending accessibility in the office area
 Recommending Accessibility at the Main Gate
Recommending Accessibility at the Main Gate
Accessibility checking
Accessibility checking
Recommending accessibility at the Library
Recommending accessibility at the Library
Advocacy Group Discussion
Recommending accessibility at the entrance

Recommending accessibility at the entrance
Group Photograph
Group Photograph
 Advocacy Group Discussion
Advocacy Group Discussion
 Advocacy Group Discussion
Advocacy Group Discussion
Accessibility checking in the pathway
Accessibility checking in the pathway
Advocacy Group Discussion
Advocacy Group Discussion
Recommending Accessibility at the Main Gate
Recommending Accessibility at the Main Gate
Recommending Library Accessibility
Recommending Library Accessibility
Recommending accessibility in the office area
Recommending accessibility in the office area
Advocacy Group Discussion
Advocacy Group Discussion
 Recommending Accessibility at the Main Gate
Recommending Accessibility at the Main Gate
Recommending accessibility in office area
Recommending accessibility in the office area
Accessibility checking in the pathway
Accessibility checking in the pathway
Recommending Library Accessibility
Advocacy Group Discussion
Advocacy Group Discussion
Accessibility checking in the pathway
Accessibility checking in the pathway
Recommending library accessibility
Recommending library accessibility

MANIQUE GUNARATNE
Vice-Chair Person – South Asian Disability Forum

EFC RELEASES BRAILLE AND LARGE PRINT POCKET CALENDARS FOR 2022

It is the time of the year when many look for calendars for the newly dawned year, either for personal use or as a gift. Visually impaired and low-vision people can now find a readable calendar of their own. The Employers’ Federation of Ceylon Specialised Training & Disability Resource Centre offers free pocket Braille and large print calendars every year.

“It is very important for vision impaired persons to expand their Braille-reading skills. The only method to evaluate the literacy rate of vision impaired persons is Braille.  “Literacy is so important. There are talking devices, but there is nothing quite like the written word. It is so important for blind children and adults to learn to read, just as it is important for sighted people to read. EFC Braille calendars are an absolute must for any blind adult or child on the go. They are fast, easy to use, efficient and a real necessity today.

The EFC Specialised Training & Disability Resource Centre for Persons with Disabilities removes barriers, creates solutions and expands possibilities so that the visually impaired can achieve their full potential.
The Braille calendars are distributed free among EFC trainees and other vision impaired persons in all corners of the country.

Handing over a Braille calendar to a vision-impaired person
Handing over a Braille calendar to a vision-impaired person
Handing over a Braille calendar to a vision-impaired person
Handing over a Braille calendar to a vision-impaired person
Handing over a Braille calendar to a vision-impaired person
Handing over a Braille calendar to a vision-impaired person
Handing over a Braille calendar to a vision-impaired person
Handing over a Braille calendar to a vision-impaired person

MANIQUE GUNARATNE
Vice President – Sri Lanka Foundation for Rehabilitation of the Disabled

ACCESS FOR ALL AT NUWARAGAM PALATHA CENTRAL PRADESHIYA SABHA

People with disabilities are more likely than the general population to suffer anxiety, discomfort, and animosity. To a significant measure, such attitudes arise from a lack of understanding of disability and what it’s like to live in a world with individuals who do not share that experience. As a result, in Sri Lanka, collaboration with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the European Union (EU) and the Employers’ Federation of Ceylon (EFC), Specialised Training & Disability Resource Centre took the initiative to implement a project to provide recommendations on Disability Accessibility and Capacity Building of Local Government Authorities in Sri Lanka. The team from EFC led by Manique Gunaratne which included persons with diverse disabilities did disability accessibility checking to give recommendations at Nuwaragam Palatha Central Pradeshiya Sabha, in Anuradhapura district,  in North Central Province in November 2021 to give recommendations on how to make the Nuwaragam Palatha Central Pradeshiya Sabha access for all. Two Advocacy Group Discussions were held with persons with disabilities belonging to Nuwaragam Palatha Central Pradeshiya Sabha and staff members (persons with non-disabilities) of the Pradeshiya Sabha on how to have an inclusive approach when providing services which already exists.

Sign language interpretation at the Advocacy Group Discussion
Sign language interpretation at the Advocacy Group Discussion
Advocacy Group Discussion with Sign Language interpretation
Advocacy Group Discussion with Sign Language interpretation
Recommending accessibility for hearing impaired persons in the library
Recommending accessibility for hearing impaired persons in the library
Recommending accessibility for hearing impaired persons in the pathway
Recommending accessibility for hearing impaired persons in the pathway
Recommending wheelchair and vision-impaired accessibility at the entrance
Recommending wheelchair and vision-impaired accessibility at the entrance
Advocacy Group Discussion
Advocacy Group Discussion
Advocacy Group Discussion
Advocacy Group Discussion
Recommending accessibility for vision impaired persons in the library
Recommending accessibility for vision impaired persons in the library
Measuring the gateway
Measuring the gateway
 Measuring the pathway
Measuring the pathway
Advocacy Group Discussion
Advocacy Group Discussion
Recommending pathway accessibility for vision impaired persons
Recommending pathway accessibility for vision impaired persons
Group photograph
Group photograph
Group photograph
Group photograph

MANIQUE GUNARATNE
Country Representative – World Disability and Rehabilitation Professionals’ Association (WDRPA)

ACCESS FOR ALL AT ANURADHAPURA MUNICIPAL COUNCIL

People with disabilities are more likely to suffer anxiety, discomfort, and animosity than the general population. To a significant measure, such attitudes arise from a lack of understanding of disability and what it’s like to live in a world with individuals who do not share that experience. As a result, in Sri Lanka, collaboration with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the Employers’ Federation of Ceylon (EFC), Specialised Training & Disability Resource Centre took the initiative to implement a project on Disability Accessibility Audit and Capacity Building of Local Government Authorities in Sri Lanka. The audit team from EFC led by #Manique Gunaratne, which included persons with diverse disabilities, did a disability accessibility audit at Anuradhapura Municipal Council (MC), in Anuradhapura district,  in North Central Province in November 2021 to give recommendations on how to make the Anuradhapura Municipal Council access for all.
Two Advocacy Group discussions were held with persons with disabilities belonging to Anuradhapura MC and staff members (persons with non-disabilities) of the Municipal Council on how to have an inclusive approach when providing services which already exists.

Team Members
Team Members
Team members at the entrance
Team members at the entrance
Hearing impaired person checking accessibility
Hearing-impaired person checking accessibility
Advocacy group meeting
Advocacy group meeting
Checking accessibility at Nenasala
Checking accessibility at Nenasala
Checking accessibility in the library
Checking accessibility in the library
Checking accessibility in the study area
Checking accessibility in the study area
Advocacy group discussion
Advocacy group discussion
Advocacy group discussion
Advocacy group discussion
Team members
Team members
Advocacy group meeting
Advocacy group meeting
Checking accessibility at the library
Checking accessibility at the library
Checking accessibility at the library
Checking accessibility at the library
Checking accessibility in the pathway
Checking accessibility in the pathway

Manique Gunaratne
Member of the National Council for Persons with Disabilities