NSF embark on project ‘Women Entrepreneurs: Empowering at the Grassroots’ under its WEST programme jointly with the Sri Lanka National Chapter of the Organization for Women in Science for the Developing World (SLNC-OWSD)

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NSF launched its ‘Women in Engineering, Science and Technology’ (WEST) programme on 19th March 2024 under the patronage of the Hon. Minister of Education, Dr Susil Premajayantha at the Sirimavo Bandaranaike Vidyalaya Jointly with Sri Lanka National Chapter of the Organization for Women in Science for the Developing World (SLNC-OWSD). One of the objectives of the WEST Programme is to empower the communities through strategized interventions to achieve social development.

Women entrepreneurship denotes an essential engine of growth in developing countries. It has leading role in reducing poverty. Rural women increasingly run their own enterprises, yet their socio-economic contributions and entrepreneurial potential remain largely unrecognized and untapped. Grassroot women entrepreneurs are also faced with barriers from access to resources, limited social and legal protection, difficulties in entering new and lucrative markets to expand their businesses. The above project is aimed at coaching and mentoring the grassroot women entrepreneurs enabling them to unleash their full potential and leveraging their business hence making women entrepreneurship matter in the socio-economic development.

Addressing the above national need and as the first phase of the project, a capacity building programme on leadership, coaching and mentoring was organized by the NSF jointly with SLNC-OWSD which was held on 5th March 2024 aimed at SLNC-OWSD members and NSF Scientific Officers who will be guiding and mentoring the grassroot women entrepreneurs as the project proceeds. This programme was conducted under the guidance of Dr Sepalika Sudasinghe, Director General of NSF. Dr Thilina Wanigasekera, President, SLNC-OWSD also attended the programme and delivered remarks. Ms Kanthi Basnayake, Director, Asia Pacific Management Institute (APMI) and Eng. Sithila Dassanayake, Deputy Innovation Officer, MAS Holdings PLC were the resource persons of the programme.

Presentation by Ms Basnayake (25 Slides)

Presentation by Ms Dassanayake (11 Slides)