The dialogue between the government and CSOs on the issue of a new law for NGOs is taking place regularly. NPC is part of the core group of the CSO-NGO Collective that is engaging in negotiations with the government, which is seeking the development of a new and all-encompassing NGO law to replace the present one.

NPC members had a meeting with members of the Puttalam District Inter Religious Committee to discuss the upcoming local government elections.

NPC will launch a new 15 month project to empower women in the districts of Gampaha, Kandy, Kegalle, Matara, Monaragala, Nuwara Eliya and Ratnapura, funded by the National Endowment for Democracy.

An orientation programme for NPC’s Legal Action Worldwide (LAW) supported project was held for 84 district partners and master trainers from 12 districts. Discussions included sharing experiences on the current political situation, the role of civil activists and research about protecting civic space.

Two activities were organized by Puttalam District Inter Religious Committee (DIRC) to raise awareness on the effects of drug use and the importance of inter-ethnic harmony. A training session on making palmyra leaf handicrafts was also held under NPC’s Plural Action for Conflict Transformation (PACT).

Recent religious violent extremism in the country arose as a result of mistrust among different ethnoreligious groups. The lack of mechanisms to identify and address conflict stressors that can lead to violence is a long standing issue. Civil society groups and community leaders have a greater responsibility to dispel mistrust and misconceptions and to rebuild relations among religious groups.

NPC board members met officials of the Jaffna University to speed up the implementation of the advanced certificate course, sustainable peace through pluralism and inclusive service delivery, funded by Freedom House.

A residential workshop on pluralism and inclusion was held for 54 senior officials of the NGO Secretariat and the NGO Coordinators in 25 District Secretariats, attended by the Director General of the NGO Secretariat Sanjeewa Wimalagunarathna and other senior officials, NGO coordinators and micro finance officials under NPC’s Plural Action for Conflict Transformation (PACT) project.

Participants in two second language courses in the Gampaha and Trincomalee Districts under NPC’s project Language to Reconcile conducted by the National Institute of Language Education Training (NILET) were awarded their certificates. Each of the courses comprised 90 hours of class sessions.

The certificate awarding ceremony for 43 participants who completed a Sinhala language course was held in Batticaloa under NPC’s Language to Reconciliation project funded by the Canadian government through the National Languages Equality Advancement Project (NLEAP). Ninety hour second language courses have been held in the Batticaloa, Gampaha and Trincomalee districts.