World Habitat Day declared by the United Nations on the basis of a resolution submitted by the then Prime Minister, the late President His Excellency Ranasinghe Premadasa to the United Nations Habitat Commission session held in Kingston, Jamaica in the year 1985, has been celebrated since 1986 under various themes connected with housing and settlements sector.
The United Nations has designated the first Monday of October every year as World Habitat Day and the event is celebrated worldwide and this year’s World Habitat Day fell on 03rd October 2015. With the objective of celebrating
this international day as a more productive programme in the housing and settlements sector, emphasis was laid this year on basic needs of the people.
The 30th commemoration of World Habitat Day was celebrated under the theme of “Housing at the Centre” at Dimbulagala Divisional Secretary Division in the Polonnaruwa District and “Sugaladevigama” model village with 24 housing units was ceremonially vested in the beneficiaries by His Excellency the President Maithreepala Sirisene Other programmes to mark Habitat Day included the granting of scattered housing loans, donating cement and housing assistance for kidney patients, awarding tool kits, uniforms and support text books to trainees of the district recruited under “Shilpa Saviya” and the donation of one million rupees to the ‘National Kidney Fund’ initiated by the Condominium Management Authority under a concept of His Excellency the President.
Concurrent to World Habitat Day, the Urban Housing Development Authority distributed water filters amongst 76 preschools ensuring safe drinking water to children in the Thamankaduwa Divisional Secretary Division where renal failure has reached alarming proportions. In addition, a host of programmes were implemented setting the stage for children living in underserved settlements to showcase their creative talents and to enhance people’s knowledge regarding the human habitat sector.