NGO capacity building - funded by the International HIV AND AIDS Alliance, UK

From the year 1996 to 2000 Alliance Lanka implemented Reproductive Health and HIV & AIDS prevention programmes through capacity building of NGO / CBO partners in 8 provinces of Sri Lanka, supporting them with technical and financial support. After selection for support, training and required facilities / services were provided to selected staff of these NGO/CBO partners and financial support to them for project implementation continued until January 2002.
Every year, around 30 to 40 NGO/CBO partners received funds from Alliance Lanka for the needs assessments that they carried out in their communities and for follow-on interventions on STD/HIV/AIDS prevention implemented in the eight provinces. In the year 2000, 32 projects covered a population of around 7,400 people. The target populations covered through these project interventions included students/teachers, members of the military, commercial sex workers, members in detention camps for drug addicts, FTZ employees, beach boys, men and women in villages bordering conflict affected areas / in refugee camps, youth living in gem mining/trading areas, migrant worker families and out of school youth in estates.

National consultation - HIV AND AIDS: A development issue and Media - Supported by The UNDP Regional HIV & Development Programme, New Delhi
The consultation was conducted with guidance and support from the UNDP Regional HIV & Development Programme, based in New Delhi, UNDP office in Sri Lanka and Country Programme Officer of UNAIDS in Sri Lanka. The Consultation included a situation analysis covering a review of existing media coverage on issues related to HIV/AIDS through meetings with / visits to NGOs, media institutions and National STD/AIDS Control programme; and a questionnaire survey and analysis. With the information collected, a draft issue paper on themes in national context was developed for discussion and review at the consultative workshop conducted with media personnel and those involved in work related to HIV/AIDS. 45 important and relevant personnel were met through visits to organizations during the consultation. This included print and electronic media, health officials, NGOs and donors. 28 media personnel responded to the questionnaire distributed by Alliance Lanka and 25 media personnel participated at the HIV/AIDS awareness workshop. 50 representatives from media institutions, Ministry of Health, donor organizations and NGOs working on HIV/AIDS prevention and care, participated in the final consultative workshop.

Orientation Programme for Prison Officials and Strengthening Skills of Commercial Sex Workers in Remand Prisons on STD/HIV AND AIDS prevention - supported by UNDP and National STD/AIDS Control Programme.
Orientation and Skills Building Programmes were conducted in Welikada and Anuradhapura Prisons. 19 Prison Officials from Welikada Prison participated in the Orientation Programme and 34 remand / convicted female prisoners participated in the Skills Building programme. 27 Prison Officials from Anuradhapura Prison participated in the Orientation Programme and 29 remand / convicted female prisoners participated in the Skills Building programme. Medical Officers attached to STD clinics and Public Health Inspectors in Anuradhapura and Colombo, assisted Alliance Lanka in conducting the Programmes. Participatory methodology was used in the Skills building workshops and a competency building session for self-reliance was also included to improve self-confidence and management skills among sex workers.

Educational Programmes on Reproductive Health and HIV AND AIDS prevention for University Students - Supported by UNICEF
Educational programmes on Reproductive Health and STD/HIV/AIDS prevention were initiated in six universities under the project. The activities included identification and skill development of a core group of selected youth from all six Universities for future awareness raising and behaviour focused programmes. Professionally qualified Doctors from the STD clinics under the National STD/AIDS Control Programme assisted Alliance Lanka in conducting the educational programmes. 1,300 students have been reached by the programme and student leaders from each university were groomed as peer educators to educate their colleagues aimed at behaviour change towards avoiding unwanted pregnancy, STD/HIV/AIDS prevention. As part of the educational programmes, selected students from the University of Colombo volunteered to develop and stage a drama on the importance of HIV/AIDS prevention & care on December 1, 2002 at the New Town hall with additional support from UNICEF and the National STD / AIDS Control Programme.

Survey to identify Needs and Problems of Youth in relation to Skills relevant to HIV AND AIDS Prevention.- supported by UNICEF
Alliance Lanka in 2003, conducted the above survey in 10 Universities throughout Sri Lanka, including the Northern and Eastern Provinces. 1200 completed questionnaires have been collected from University students, data entry was completed, analysed and the survey report is available.

Condom Distribution - supported by UNFPA
Seven condom vending machines were installed by Alliance Lanka through four of its NGO partners. These are currently operational in Dambulla, Ratnapura and Colombo. All seven machines were supplied by UNFPA. Condom sales were on the average around 65 condoms per machine per month with a total sales figure of approximately 2,500. Problems prevail in operating the machines. However, regular monitoring provideed a continuous service to clients through the machines. Awareness programmes on STD/HIV/AIDS prevention and distribution of leaflets with selected communities such as tri-shaw drivers and commercial sex workers have resulted in improving sales.

Reproductive Health STD/HIV AND AIDS and Unwanted Pregnancy Prevention (RESHAPE) among FTZ workers through Peer Education.- supported by the Ministry of Health

Alliance Lanka implemented a project to educate 1,700 FTZ workers in Katunayake Investment Promotion Zone with the objective of preventing the spread of STD/HIV/AIDS and unwanted pregnancies through a peer education strategy. Skills were developed among 100 peer educators selected from the Zone through awareness creation activities conducted within companies and near Boarding houses. These Peer educators were mobilized to achieve project objectives. Information material in the form of educational booklets, folders and audio cassettes were distributed among the workers. The project ended in 2005 and was funded by the World Bank through the National HIV/AIDS Prevention Project of the Ministry of Health With a view to assist young workers to sustain their livelihoods, savings habits were promoted among them. This was coupled with leadership skills development programmes as well as Entrepreneurship development initiatives, anticipating sustainable livelihoods for these workers.

Reducing Risk Taking Behaviour - Drug Abuse and HIV & AIDS among young people.
With support from the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, (UNODC) Regional Office, South Asia based in New Delhi, Alliance Lanka commenced implementing a pilot project to reduce drug abuse and spread of HIV/AIDS among young people in two locations, Dambulla and Sri Jayawardenapura. This project too worked to build skills among 100 peer educators to achieve project objectives during a period of nine months. National Dangerous Drug Control Board (NDDCB) provided technical support in project implementation. With lessons learnt and experience gained, Alliance Lanka can be assisted to expand this project to other communities. With a view to assist youth to sustain their livelihoods, and to facilitate them to move away from drug use, leadership skills development programmes as well as Entrepreneurship development initiatives were also implemented anticipating sustainable livelihoods for these young males. The second phase of this project was started in late 2005 in the two sites through establishment of a referral network for youth requiring external assistance to stop drug use. Alliance Lanka supported this with entrepreneurship development programmes to enable unemployed youth to commence business activities aimed at sustained livelihoods which would generate additional incomes as well as to keep them occupied with productive activities. In 2006/2007 period, Alliance Lanka continued to work in the District of Colombo to assist the participants to move away from drug use. Hence various programmes identified through needs assessments were conducted in the locations. Involvement of families with women and children in programmes useful for them were of immense use to the participants and their families. Sports activities, child abuse prevention programmes, counseling and testing for HIV and skills development programmes were some of these.

Capacity Building programmes for CSOs on HIV AND AIDS
Alliance Lanka worked very closely with the ILO/USDOL Workplace Education Programme in Sri Lanka to conduct a formative assessment in five estates, five hotels and four manufacturing companies to develop Behaviour Change Communication (BCC) programmes for people involved in the sector in early 2006. A report on the assessment is available.

Capacity Building programmes for CSOs on HIV AND AIDS
South Asia Women’s Fund supported Alliance Lanka to improve the livelihoods of 200 women who have been affected by the tsunami, war or any other disaster / family related issues, in four districts (Colombo, Ampara, Baticaloa and Trincomalee) of Sri lanka. 

Capacity Building programmes for CSOs on HIV AND AIDS

Alliance Lanka was selected as the lead organization working on HIV and AIDS in Asia for the Commonwealth Foundation, UK . As part of its activities with support from the Commonwealth Foundation, Alliance Lanka commenced a series of capacity building programmes for NGOs and civil society organizations (CSOs) in Sri Lanka to work effectively on HIV and AIDS. These were mainly two to three day residential workshops including sessions on HIV/AIDS clinical aspects, Advocacy, Behaviour Change Communication, how to conduct Focus Group discussions, Caring for people living with HIV, and Monitoring & Evaluation. At the end of each workshop Alliance Lanka planned the next steps with participants to identify future directions to work on HIV/AIDS. These plans will result in a coordinated effort to prepare proposals for future interventions in the country on HIV. Ministry of Health, especially the National STD/AIDS Control Programme (NSACP) associated closely with Alliance Lanka in organizing and conducting the workshops. Around 150 NGOs/CSOs participated in five programmes conducted by Alliance Lanka from March to July 2007. The workshops were held in Colombo,
Anuradhapura, Galle, Kandy and Ratnapura, providing opportunities to organizations based out of Colombo also to participate.

Study on Gender Mainstreaming in the industrial sector of Sri Lanka. 2013
With support from UNIDO, Alliance Lanka conducted a study on Gender mainstreaming in the industrial sector of Sri Lanka and developed strategies to incorporate Gender mainstreaming into activities of the National Cleaner Production Centre in 2013. 

Breaking Point Project – 2012-2013
Alliance Lanka conducted a research in 2012 on Millenium Development Goal (MDG) achievement in Sri Lanka (Breaking Point Project) with support from the Commonwealth Foundation UK. During December 2012 a national consultation was organized and a two day workshop was conducted in January 2013 to validate data and identify gaps in the research report. 

Translation and Adaptation of Advocacy Tool kit into Sinhala and Tamil
An advocacy toolkit prepared by APCASO (Asia Pacific Council of AIDS Service Organisations ) was adapted and translated into Sinhala and Tamil and trained NGO participants on the use of the four manuals in the toolkit in 2011. 

Study on Universal Access – supported by APCASO - 2010
Alliance Lanka conducted a research study on Universal Access in relation to HIV and AIDS in Sri Lanka with support from APCASO (Asia Pacific Council of AIDS Service Organisations) . Alliance Lanka was supported nationally by the UNAIDS Sri Lanka office in the formulation of the report. Alliance Lanka is the national focal point of APCASO. 

Support to NSACP of Ministry of Health - 2007
On the request of the Director, National STD/AIDS Control Programme, Alliance Lanka organized and conducted the National level NGO consultation with support from the Commonwealth Foundation, to obtain inputs for the National Strategic Plan – April 2007 

Special Events

International Candlelight Memorial 1998 to 2012
Every year, Alliance Lanka organizes this event together with its partner CSOs. Alliance Lanka organised "Bodhi Pooja" in Moratuwa in May 2007, with women participants of Alliance Lanka's HIV/AIDS livelihood programme to invoke blessings for HIV positive persons and those who have died of AIDS. This was the 24th AIDS Candle light Memorial where the participants offered flowers to Lord Buddha, lit many oil lamps, and pinned red ribbons on all those who were at and near the event. The event ended with the lighting of red candles placed on clay lamps which were placed to make a large double red ribbon. In 2006, the 23nd International Candle Light Memorial was held in Rajagiriya (Colombo District) with support from Actionaid International Sri Lanka office. Assistance and support from the STD clinic and the ILO/HIV/AIDS Workplace Programme too helped Alliance Lanka to hold the event successfully. Alliance Lanka was able to stage a Puppet show with HIV/AIDS prevention messages and address stigma related to HIV during this event. Information booklets and material on HIV/AIDS prevention were also distributed with one to one discussions by Alliance Lanka staff with young people who wanted to know more about the subject. Around 250 candles on clay pots were lit at the Splash entertainment park premises in Rajagiriya, on the occasion.

In 2011, Alliance Lanka organized a health awareness programme and a blood testing campaign for Sexually transmitted infections among drug users in the district of Colombo in association with the STD clinic in Kalubowila – Colombo north Teaching Hospital.

In 2012, Alliance Lanka organized an alms giving activity to inmates of an elders home located in Mattegoda 

World AIDS Day
As part of World AIDS day falling on 1st December every year, Alliance Lanka remembers and extend support to people who are infected with HIV and those living with AIDS in coordination with some of the participants of it's projects. On the second of December 2006, Alliance Lanka organized and sponsored a friendly Cricket Match at the Cooray Park in Kirillapona for youth in Colombo to take part. 8 teams took part in the match. The red ribbon pinning campaign and the HIV/AIDS awareness creation sessions held at the venue facilitated all the participants and spectators to know more about HIV and AIDS, and internalize the value of supporting those who are infected and affected with the virus.

Other events included, Books and stationery distribution for children of infected and affected families, , Shramadana, Candle lighting ceremonies, Educational programmes, AIDS walks, Puppet shows, Street drama, Musical shows etc. On the second of December 2008, Alliance Lanka organized a Bodhi Pooja at Walana Temple in Moratuwa.. The red ribbon pinning campaign and the HIV/AIDS awareness creation sessions held at the venue facilitated all the participants and spectators to know more about HIV and AIDS, and internalize the value of supporting those who are infected and affected with the virus. In 2009, Alliance Lanka joined the AIDS Day programme organised by the Ministry of Health , held at the Bandaranayke Memorial International Conference Hall.

In 2010, a well organized special event was held at the Open Air Theatre of the Colombo Municipal Council with a street drama display, and launching of a CD with four new songs specifically made on HIV prevention. The Director of the National STD AIDS Control Programme and UNAIDS country coordinator were the chief guests at the event.

In 2011, Alliance Lanka supported children of HIV affected families through distribution of school books and stationery to commemorate World AIDS Day. The event supported by UNAIDS and Commonwealth Foundation was conducted in association with the AGA Office Maharagama and held at their conference hall. 

Pan Commonwealth Civil Society Network
Alliance Lanka, as the lead organization of the Commonwealth Foundation for HIV and AIDS in Asia held the official launch of the Pan Commonwealth Civil Society Network on HIV and AIDS in the Asian region in August 2007 with participation of more than 150 delegates from Sri Lanka and overseas. The Director of the Foundation Dr Mark Collins spoke at the launch and the chief guest was Hon. Nimal Siripala De Silva, Minister of Healthcare and Nutrition.