The first edition of the Differently Abled Entrepreneur Awards organized by the FCCISL accomplished a great success

Federation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry of Sri Lankan (FCCISL) turned a new leaf in recognizing the entrepreneurial talents by introducing a new awards category, “Differently Abled Entrepreneur of the Year” with its flagship event, Sri Lankan Entrepreneur of the Year 2012.  The main objective of introducing this category of recognition is to motivate the differently abled people who have emerged as successful entrepreneurs. A large number of differently abled entrepreneurs who own and manage enterprises successfully, from across the country vied for the award regionally as well as on national level.

Persone Come Noi (PCN), an INGO based in Italy supported FCCISL to organize this awards. Making a speech at the national event of Sri Lankan Entreporenuer of the Year 2012 held in Waters Edge, Battaramulla in December last year, Mr.Davide Carlo Lamberti, Country Representative of Persone Come Noi O.N.G, at the Country desk Sri Lanka stated “This is the first edition of the Differently Abled Entrepreneur of the Year and it is already a great success. We are proud and honored to admire all the work done by FCCISL and DAE participants. Recognizing and rewarding these differently abled entrepreneur at both regional and national level in a very systematic manner is a milestone achieved by the PCN”.

Persone Come Noi is currently engaged in 13 countries to serve local populations meet their basic needs, often fighting against the worst forms of discriminations. In Sri Lanka in particular, PCN worked since tsunami with public and private stakeholders. During its interventions in Sri Lanka, PCN and its partners encountered several marginalized groups and finally, in 2012, with the great commitment of the FCCISL and its members, this experience has started.

The Sri Lankan Entrepreneur of the Year Award is a culmination of a journey, which has been organized for the last 17 years. This long running national award scheme organized by the FCCISL is the first and most comprehensive award scheme that evaluates local business based on a multi – faceted requirements list. The award has also been a pioneer in recognizing entrepreneurs who were not in the limelight. FCCISL is becoming much stronger as an organization and works on all important aspects related to entrepreneurship.

All the eligible applicants were evaluated in terms of the respective province for the Provincial Awards and provincial winners were evaluated based on the marks obtained in the provincial round for the national awards. The awards for the regional winners were given away in 5 regional Awards Ceremonies held in Puttalam, Baticaloa, Kandy, Ratnapura and Galle. The evaluation process consisted of three stages namely desk review, site visits and interviews. The final reviews were done by the panel of judges.

Mr. M D Premadasa from Reeheb Lanka was the national winner of this category and awarded as the Differently Abled Entreprenuer of the Year 2012. Mr. P.N. Jagath Shantha of Maximum Motor Care awarded as the 1st Runner Up and Mr. J A Asoka Perera of Safe Hands Products         as the 02nd Runner Up of the national level. The Provincial winners are Mr. M D Premadasa of Reeheb Lanka from Western Province, Mr. Pradeep Kumara of Darshana Products from Southern province, Mr. Jagath Shantha of Maximum Motor Care from Central Province, Mr. S Bandara of Prasanka Communication from Sabaragamuwa Province, Mr. Sampath Palitha Jayasingha of S.P Constructions from North Western Province, Mr. A Bandula of Nelum Kole Bath Kade from North Central Province.

By the “Differently Abled Entrepreneur of the Year” awards organized by the FCCISL with the support of Persone Come Noi (PCN), recognized these highly motivated entrepreneurs who achieve their set goals by working beyond emotional and physical barriers. They are the real heroes after all because not only Sri Lanka, but the entire world needs people like them.