On the 20th of January 2023,AkzoNobel Paints– a leading global paints and coatings company and manufacturer of Dulux paints—inked a contract renewing its collaboration with SOS Children’s Villages Sri Lanka for the 5th year in a row.
The global partnership -now with 24 participating countries- is part of AkzoNobel’s ‘Let’s Colour’ initiative, and is designed to use education and renovation to drive a positive impact on the issue of youth unemployment. With a focus on advancing the work prospects of young people hailing from unstable backgrounds, these programs include mentorships and training on professional painting and renovation, entrepreneurship, and soft skill development with the aim to boost employability, and as a result produce successful, independent adults who will take responsibility for themselves as well as their communities.
Harnessing the power of paint, this partnership additionally involves the donation of Dulux Paint towards improving the living spaces of children, young people, and their families. With the support of AkzoNobel employee volunteers, the partnership also aims to mentor and motivate youth at SOS villages. Additionally, this collaboration provides direct employment opportunities, with AkzoNobel Sri Lanka having already recruited 2 young adults following their leave from SOS Villages’ care.
From the start of the partnership, more than 34,000 children and young people have benefitted from the program worldwide, with over 9,400 young people having been officially trained. In Sri Lanka alone as many as 700 children were trained into employable citizens and productive contributors to the country’s economy.
“SOS Children’s Villages is an organisation that does invaluable work, and here in Sri Lanka they are actively involved in ensuring that even children in need are allowed to reach their full potential,” said Upendra Gunawardhana, Head of Marketing of AkzoNobel Sri Lanka. “We are very excited to be able to continue working together in creating more opportunities to strengthen the employability of these deserving young people.”
“Over the years AkzoNobel and its employees have provided valuable training, elevated living spaces, and created memorable learning experiences for the children and their families in our communities,” said Divakar Ratnadurai, National Director, SOS Children’s Villages Sri Lanka. “We’re delighted to be renewing our partnership with a company that shares our vision of not just creating a positive impact, but also actively transforming the livelihoods of youth living below the poverty line.”