As project manager for LIRNEasia’s Knowledge to Innovation project, Samangi worked with municipal councils in Sri Lanka, among other entities, to build a network of stakeholders with resources to educate and implement the program through the network. Samangi joined a leading hotel in Sri Lanka as a coordinator for nature and cultural activities after leaving LIRNEasia in August 2008.
Samangi is a Consultant and a Director of a consultancy firm established with four of her university batch mates, called Green Team Consultancies and Research (Pvt) Ltd. The company provides specialised consultancy services on environmental matters, such as compliance with environmental regulations, environmental impact assessments and environmentally friendly solutions, for companies in Sri Lanka. Samangi says LIRNEasia had a significant impact on her current career choice.
Samangi joined LIRNEasia in April 2007, as the Project Manager of the 3R project under the ‘Knowledge to Innovation’ project. She coordinated the 3R project until she left LIRNEasia in August 2008. During this period she collaborated with Municipal Councils on solid-waste management and worked closely with the Gampaha Municipal Council to implement the Council’s ‘Solid-waste Management Awareness Program’ in households in the Gampaha area. The program’s objective was to reduce the Municipal Council’s cost of solid-waste management by ensuring domestic waste matter was separated at point of origin.
“We undertook to educate households and school children about the importance of separating solid-waste at home and in school, and how to practice 3R principles,” explains Samangi.
School children were targeted through the Girl Guides Association of Sri Lanka. Children and households were also taught how to make organic compost, and households were taught how to start home gardens using compost as fertilizer. The 3R project also facilitated linkages between Municipal Councils and providers of recycling services, to help recycle paper, plastic and polythene. In addition, the project team worked with several schools in Colombo to educate children about 3R principles and distributed polybags to separate waste inside classrooms.
“This experience helped me build a wide network of government, non-government and private sector contacts, that are extremely helpful in my current work, says Samangi. “I must also mention that it was Dr Sujata Gamage who helped me develop my report writing skills, as I was weak in this area at the time I joined LIRNEasia.” These experiences at LIRNEasia, says Samangi, will continue to come in useful even in the future.