Grassroots Foundation’s Community Based Sustainable Agriculture project gets World Bank funding

A project proposal submitted by Grassroots Foundation is one of 05 (out of 160 applications) that will receive funding from International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (World Bank) Civil society Fund (CSF).The Civil Society Fund supports activities related to civic engagement by providing small grants administered through World Bank Country Office of Sri Lanka.

The objective of the Project is to support community based sustainable agriculture mechanism and systems to mitigate and adapt to climate change through Organic Farming, integrated water resources management and networking. Since climate change has a direct impact on Agriculture, environmentally sound farming methods need to be developed and practiced through Grassroots intervention. Through several educational and field application activities planned, Grassroots expects the farmers to adopt better agricultural practices that will increase their farm land productivity and profitability. These activities are aimed at encouraging the younger generation’s participation in agriculture, and attracting and retaining them in the business. Retaining the younger generation in agriculture businesses has become increasingly difficult over the years as they prefer to go to the city in search of other ‘jobs’. Through activities planned for the young farmers, Grassroots intends to shed some light on young farmers to change their attitude towards farming, and to eco friendly cultivation as a profitable enterprise they should manage as professional farmers, Secretary General of the Grassroots Foundation-Zarook Marikkar said.

Grassroots in collaboration with the Department of Agriculture, Post Harvesting Technology Institute will provide the technical knowhow to members of the Circle and other farmers. A thematic focus is adopted each year to complement the World Bank program in Sri Lanka. For 2010, the theme is “Development and Climate Change – Building Community Resilience in the Dry Zone of Sri Lanka”. CSF 2010 shall support innovative mechanisms to adapt to and mitigate Climate Change through community based initiatives related to sustainable agricultural practices at the household level, water management, managing solid waste and any other responsible actions to mitigate and adapt to Climate Change. Water scarcity in the Dry Zone area of Sri Lanka is one of the biggest challenges faced by people living in Northern, Eastern and South Eastern regions of Sri Lanka, which are also key areas of agriculture production. The proposed project will be implemented in Vavuniya and Anuradhapura District over one year.

International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (World Bank) and Grassroots Foundation recently signed the agreement for this project. Grassroots Foundation is a local not for profit organization that was incorporated under the Act of Parliament No.77 of 2009 .It was initiated by the concerned group of committed activists from civil society, business, government servants and politicians, faith communities and Social Service movements. The Foundation is built on a commitment to alleviate poverty and uphold the democratic values of equality, justice and respect for human rights. Organic framing program is one of its key program implemented in Puttalam, Kaluthara and Badulla districts. To date more than 500 farmers has been trained on the organic farming and other related agriculture disciplines and gain rich of success cases of the program.

For further information or possible collaborations, please contact

Mr. Chandima Pinsiri, Program Manager on 011 269 5845 or 011 474 1700,



write to

Grassroots Foundation, 32/1 Castle Street, Colombo 8 Sri Lanka.