The iVoice Idea Competition 2017 invited Sri Lankan youth between the ages of 18-29 years to submit innovative ideas to address social issues in their communities. Five awareness sessions were conducted around the island, resulting in over 100 idea submissions. 20 ideas were shortlisted and the participants were invited to a two-day residency workshop, during which, participants received mentorship and guidance to further develop their ideas into feasible project plans. 10 winners were selected and were granted Rs.100,000 each as seed capital to implement and execute their projects.

iVoice is an initiative of UNFPA and SDJF to empower youth participation in community development

Idea Competition Winners - 2017

Piyahasie Dias

19 years , Colombo

Having seen her father struggle as a hearing-impaired person, Piyahasie was adamant to make a difference for the better. With her ability to communicate in sign language, her idea is to create a sign language grammar book for hearing impaired students with the support of “ahanna” Foundation.

Sandaradura Lakmee Nilanka de Silva

26 years , Matara

Lakmee’s idea is to promote inclusive education among students, teachers, and parents by producing an entertaining programme titled ‘Yalu Mamage Katandara’ (Friendly Uncle’s Stories). She plans to share this programme widely on social media to create awareness on the importance of inclusive education.

Chamal Malintha Gunasinghe

18 years ,Kalutara

Chamal comes from a rural village, where it is difficult to effectively share key messages and information among villagers. He has developed an LED board model, which can be used to innovatively communicate messages with masses with less environmental waste. His idea is to use these LED boards to drive social change.

Arzath Areef

25 years , Ampara

Waste management is a serious issue in Sainthamaruthu in the East of Sri Lanka. The municipal council does not have sufficient resources to ensure proper waste management. Arzath’s idea is to create a citizen-app which does not use much resources, and can assist in ensuring better solid waste management in his village

Sivalingam Vimalraj

26 years , Jaffna

Having witnessed many children not going to school or dropping out of school at a very basic level due to various reasons, Vimalraj wanted to make a change. His idea is to carry out a survey and find out the reasons to this. Using the findings, he wants to create a short film and share it with relevant stakeholders to drive positive social change.

Damith Chandana

21 years , Kandy

As a young male, Damith has realized that sexual harassment in public transport is a serious issue that affects women. To address this issue, his idea is to create an awareness video for positive behavioural change.

Nalinda Priyanjith Silva

26 years , Colombo

Nalinda has invented a mosquito trap which is made from raw materials that can be easily sourced. His idea is to reduce the number of deaths caused by mosquito-borne diseases by training more youth on how to produce this mosquito trap

Sujith Samarasinghe

21 years , Kalutara

Sujith wants to reduce the loss of life and injuries due to motorbike accidents. His idea is to create an awareness video which will educate young people on how to safely ride motorbikes, and to share this video via social media, schools, and other audiences.

Rifak Ahmed

26 years , Galle

As a student of chemical engineering, Rifak learned about sustainable energy and saw the potential of producing bio gas from kitchen waste. His idea is to introduce a small bio gas unit in urban areas, so that waste can be used in an effective manner

Dinithi Prathiba Kaluarachchi, 23 years, Ratnapura

23 years , Ratnapura

Dinithi is an undergraduate student of Ruhunu University. As a student, she has realized that Facebook has affected youth who use the social media tool without proper understanding. She wants to create awareness about the proper usage of Facebook among students at the university.