Several programs will be implemented throughout Sri Lanka from October 1 to 30 to mark the World’s Children’s Day that falls on October 1, State Minister of Women and Child Development, Pre-School and Primary Education, School Infrastructure and Education Service, Piyal Nishantha says.

The World Children’s Day ceremony this year will be held live under the patronage of Education Minister Dinesh Gunawardana and Media Minister Dallas Alahapperuma in the Main Studio of the National Television – Rupavahini on October 1 from 10 am to 12 noon. The State Minister was addressing a media briefing to educate the people about the programs to be held on the sidelines of the Children’s Day ceremony titled ‘Children Before Everything’ that scheduled for October 01 held at the Government’s Information Department today (30).

Special attention has been drawn on pre-school students on Children’s Day. Health safety equipment will be distributed among the pre-school students of 11 districts, scholarships will be granted to 1500 pre-school teachers to follow Pre-School Diploma courses, and a new Television Channel titled Pre-School of Tiny Tots (Punchi Ape Perapasala) are among the special programs to be launched tomorrow. In addition, computer units will be set up for the inmates of 379 children’s development centres throughout the country. 700 computers have been handed over to Provincial Commissioners of Probation and Child Care Service in this regard.

The State Minister stated during the media briefing that absenteeism is observed in schools in difficult areas as some students cannot afford the morning meal and are without sanitary facilities. A State Level program to provide the morning meal to students in difficult areas and providing sanitary facilities to female students of 350 schools under the ‘Diyani’ project will be launched on Children’s Day this year.

At the same time, arrangements have been made to conduct island-wide awareness programs to educate the children about the increasing violence and abuse against children. This aims to reduce child abuse and harassment against children.

Meanwhile, the aesthetic conversation titled “Ammawarune” introduced according to the concept of Sate Minister Piyal Nishantha in 2013 will be telecast on National Television on October 3 from 10 am to 12 noon.  The State Minister says that the program expects to bring parents and children closer during the COVID-19 pandemic.

When mothers expect to go abroad for housemaid jobs, it has been made mandatory for them to register with the relevant Divisional Secretariat beforehand. Thereafter, children of such women will be observed by Child Development Officers, Women Development Officers and Grama Seva Niladhari. It aims to prevent child labour and various forms of child harassment.

Meanwhile, World Children’s Day ceremony for the Indigenous community titled, ‘Kekulange Lama Dinaya’ is held at Dambana in Mahiyanganaya on October 30. A new building of Watawana Primary School will be opened and a foundation will be laid for quarters for teachers. Similar programs will be implemented throughout the month covering all the provinces.  State Minister of Women and Child Development, Pre-School and Primary Education, School Infrastructure and Education Service, Piyal Nishantha said that his aim is not to limit these development work to a month but to continue them throughout the year.