Child artists from all over Sri Lanka and some overseas locations were rewarded for their creative expression with cash prizes totalling Rs 3 million recently, at the conclusion of the fourth edition of ‘Arunalu Siththam’ – the island-wide children’s art competition conducted by the Commercial Bank of Ceylon.
Exclusively for children between the ages of four and 16, the competition was hosted under the banner of the Bank’s popular children’s savings account ‘Arunalu’ and was also open this year to Sri Lankan children living overseas.
More than 12,000 drawings were uploaded to www.arunalusiththam.lk as entries in the five age groups, and Commercial Bank invited 137 winners and their family members to the awards ceremony and exhibition at Apé Gama in Sri Jayewardenepura. The exhibition featured 274 drawings that won cash prizes in the 2021 and 2022 editions of Arunalu Siththam.
The judging of drawings submitted for this year’s competition was entrusted to an expert panel of judges headed by Professor Susiripala Malimboda.
The five categories for the competition were Pre-school (ages 4-5), Primary (ages 6-7), Post Primary (ages 8-10), Junior (ages 11-13), and Senior (ages 14-16). The younger contestants had the freedom to draw on a topic of their choosing on A3 size paper, but participants in the Junior and Senior Categories were requested to create art exploring the themes of “Our responsibility as children” and “A greener world” respectively, on 14×18 inch paper.
The 25 youngest winners in the Local Pre-School category were each awarded a cash prize of Rs 10,000 and certificates. Another 50 participants in this category were awarded Merit Certificates. The drawings that won first place in the other four Local age categories each received a cash prize of Rs 100,000, while the second and third placed drawings in these categories received cash prizes of Rs 75,000 and Rs 50,000 respectively, along with certificates. In each of the Local Post-Primary, Primary, Junior and Senior categories 25 contestants also received Awards of Excellence with cash prizes of Rs 10,000 each and certificates. Another 50 contestants from each of these four categories were awarded Merit Certificates.
In the new category introduced for Sri Lankan children who are residents outside Sri Lanka, two winners were awarded a cash prize of Rs 50,000 each, the Bank said.
Commercial Bank launched the ‘Arunalu Siththam Art Competition’ in 2017. The flagship children’s savings account of Commercial Bank, Arunalu, after which the competition was named, offers a higher interest rate for Children’s Savings Accounts and rewards account holders with special cash prizes if they score the first, second or third highest aggregate marks in their schools at the Year 5 Scholarship Examination.
Sri Lanka’s first 100% carbon neutral bank and the first Sri Lankan bank to be listed among the Top 1000 Banks of the World, Commercial Bank operates a network of 271 branches and 957 automated machines in Sri Lanka. Commercial Bank is the largest lender to Sri Lanka’s SME sector and is a leader in digital innovation in the country’s Banking sector. The Bank’s overseas operations encompass Bangladesh, where the Bank operates 20 outlets; Myanmar, where it has a Microfinance company in Nay Pyi Taw; and the Maldives, where the Bank has a fully-fledged Tier I Bank with a majority stake.
Commercial Bank Managing Director/CEO Mr Sanath Manatunge, Chief Operating Officer Mr S. Prabagar and representatives of the corporate and senior management of the Bank with the judges and winners of the Arunalu Siththam art competition.