Students from Kurunegala and Vavuniya gets an exhilarating World Cup experience

Initiative co-organized by Dialog Axiata & Japan International Corporation Agency


In a recent initiative co-organized by Sri Lanka’s top connectivity provider Dialog Axiata and the Japan International Corporation Agency, two schools from Kurunegala and Vavuniya were presented with the opportunity to watch the FIFA World Cup encounter between Japan and Costa Rica live and play a few friendly games against one another.

Football players from the Sputnik International Education Center in Kurunegala and the girls’ and boys’ teams from Saraswathy Vidyalayam in Suntharapuram, Vavuniya, gathered in Vavuniya on Sunday to play the game they both love.

At each venue, more than 150 kids, teachers and guests were able to participate in the excitement of the match. Volunteers from of the Japan Overseas Cooperation (JOCV), who empower early childhood education, welfare and education for individuals with disabilities, and environmental education in Sri Lanka, spoke at the Sputnik International Education Centre about their work in Sri Lanka as well as about Japan and its culture, highlighting the shared values between the two nations.

Following the friendly matches, a live broadcast of the first-round FIFA World Cup match between Japan and Costa Rica was shown in the school auditorium. A Japanese language school in Kurunegala, the Sputnik International Education Centre, also broadcast the FIFA match live.

Sputnik Director General Dr. Eshantha Ariyadasa and JICA Sri Lanka Senior Representative Yoshida Kentaro graced the occasion with their presence at the event in Kurunegala.

The ceremony at Saraswathy Vidyalayam highlighted Northern Province Chief Secretary Saman Bandulasena as the Guest of Honor. Lenin Arivakalan, Vavuniya Zonal Director of Education, and Deputy Chief Secretary R. Umakanthan. Principal J. Manogowry of Saraswathy Vidyalayam, Chief Representative Yamada Tetsuya of JICA Sri Lanka, and certain other JICA and Northern Province representatives visited the students and teachers in Suntharapuram, Vavuniya, to celebrate the occasion.

The “Rural Infrastructure Development Project in Emerging Regions (RIDEP)” is funded by JICA, and it supports the village of Suntharapuram. The Suntharapuram portable water supply sub-project under RIDEP was ceremonially opened by the guests at the same time as the connection of pipe-borne water to two of the woman-headed households.

This year’s festivities are especially significant for Japan and Sri Lanka as it marks the 40th anniversary of JICA in Sri Lanka and the 70th anniversary of their diplomatic relations.