There is growing interest amongst Canadians, and especially members of the Canadian Tamil diaspora, in contributing their time and professional expertise in a meaningful manner to develop and empower vulnerable communities in war-affected, under-developed, rural, and remote regions of Sri Lanka. However, it is often difficult for these individuals to identify and connect with credible local non-governmental organizations and community-based organizations in Sri Lanka.
comdu.it is a Canadian network of diaspora changemakers interested in sustainable development of vulnerable communities in war-affected, under-developed, rural, and remote regions of Sri Lanka, with an emphasis on the Northern and Eastern Provinces. Its mission is to help shift diaspora engagement from charity to sustainability, from aid to economic development, and from remittance to knowledge-based economy.
The Virtual Mentorship program stream matches experienced STEM entrepreneurs with the opportunity to work with start-up and emerging entrepreneurs in the Northern Province on starting up, growing, and scaling their businesses. The program will take place via Skype/telephony channels with the option for mentor to travel to Batticaloa, Sri Lanka later in 2017 for a start-up summit.
The Northern Chamber of Information Technology is the gateway to the information technology market and industry in Northern Province of Sri Lanka.. Its core focus sectors include software, service, hardware, training, and communications. For more information, please visit www.ncit.lk.
Roles and Responsibilities
- Help the entrepreneur to produce a credible business plan and marketing plan.
- Show the entrepreneur how to conduct engaging presentations.
- Teach the entrepreneur how to balance positive cash flow and maintain accounts.
- Assist the entrepreneur with finding a financial backer and getting the product to market.
- Provide information on material and seminars that may be of use to the entrepreneur.
- Potentially travel to Batticaloa, Sri Lanka for Startup Weekend event in 2017.
- High proficiency level and knowledge in all aspects of business creation.
- Thorough understanding of business management and organisation.
- Have a strong understanding of teaching skills and ability to form one-to-one coaching strategies.
- Some understanding or open to learning about the legislative framework for new business start-ups in Sri Lanka.
- Full fluency in English and conversational proficiency in Tamil.
- Must be driven to improve the lives of marginalized people, and work with them to do so, in a way that is led by them, for them, and is sustainable and achieves their objectives.
- Must be committed to equality, and by extension, open to learning about resilience, diversity and solidarity from the vulnerable communities they are working with.
- Must be able to lead by example by being open minded, humble and embrace opportunities to grow personally.
Volunteer Benefits and Support
- Participation in pre-matching orientation where you will have the opportunity to learn about comdu.it’s work, gain practical skills for living and working in a lower middle-income country, and meet other volunteers.
- The opportunity of a lifetime to provide meaningful assistance to war-impacted communities in the North and East of Sri Lanka.
- Applicants must be a Canadian citizen or permanent resident of Canada between the ages of 40 – 65.