World Wetlands Day 2008 -- Sri Lanka
Celebration of world wetlands day on 2nd of February 2008 in Bundala National Park, Sri Lanka
The world wetlands day on 2nd of February 2008 was celebrated prestigiously in Bundala National Park, Sri Lanka. More than thousand of people including school children and community people gathered to the park office for mark the wetlands day. The theme of the day was "Healthy wetlands, Healthy people".
School children who were invited from vicinity of the park which are Pallemalala Maha Vidyalaya, Udamalala Maha Vidyalaya, Hambantota St. Maris College, Hambantota Zahira College, Weerawilla Vidyartha College, Debarawewa National School, Welligaththa primary school and Bundala primary school. Head of the schools and teachers also participated with more than 600 students.
Community people were called from surrounding the National park. There are 21 Grama Niladari divisions (GN division) have near by the bundala wetlands. Out of 21 GN division 13 divisions have been selected for out reach program which is conducting the Bundala National Park. Therefore accepted our invitation and participated more than 500 community people.
Welcome speech and about importance of the day explained by park warden Mr. Sisira Kumara De Silva. Assistant Director of Yala Bundala region Mr P.M Darmathilaka delivered the conservation message to audience to protect our wetlands like Bundala National Park. In addition he emphasized the support from community and school children to conserve our protected areas.
Commander of Yala, Hambantota area Brigadier Sudantha Ranasingha also participated to the ceremony. He also addressed the audience and gave the conservation message. The guest lecture of the ceremony was given by the Dr. Sumithipala who is the senior policy scientist (Ecology and Biodiversity) African countries and South Asian countries. He discussed about the current situation of water availability of Sri Lanka and issues of water pollution which we have faced. Furthermore he talked about snake of Sri Lanka that helped to give up some myths of people about snakes.
Prize giving held as the last event of the session. Art and debate competitions were done before the day of the wetlands and selected the winners. So all the winners and participants of the two events were given prizes and certificates.
Sisira Kumara De Silva
Bundala National Park
Department of Wildlife Conservation