Under the Civic Dialogue and Cross Community Activities project, funded by Caritas Korea, a barren paddy field for 10 years in Maduragama in the district of Puttalam was harvested by the CBO members of the project on 14th of February 2020. The initiative comes as an solution to the poverty widespread in the region.

Caritas Chilaw has formed 5 Community Based Organizations (CBO) in Maduragama in 2020 and trained the communities in many aspects of community development and empowerment including the training on advocacy and lobbying. At the end of the training, the communities were made aware of their own issues and to seek solutions. As a result of the intervention, a 27 acre paddy field belonging to the government has been acquired with the required permission last year and the each member has been given ½ an acre to engage in paddy cultivation. As the fields were overgrown with large trees and bushes for nor using the land for cultivations for a long period, the CBO members had to engage in strenuous preparations of the land. However, the work had been carried out as a community and the CBO members were assisted by Caritas Chilaw.

Last Friday, the harvesting ceremony has been organized while giving more emphasis on the traditions and customs of the region and people are of the view that their initiative will be an example to their children as well as the other Diocesan counterparts to take up such challenges and their fight against poverty which has in fact exacerbated due to the Covid pandemic.
The National Centre staff too participated at this joyous moment and the ceremony has been organized under the leadership of Rev. Fr. Luke Nelson, Director of Caritas Chilaw.