The World Habitat Day is celebrated on the first Monday of the month of October every year and it fell on 02nd October this year. This international day celebration was carried out focusing on basic needs of the people with a view to implementing this to be an effective programme in housing and settlement sector.
“Housing Polices – Affordable Homes” has been declared as the theme of the 32nd World Habitat Day celebration by the United Nations this year and it has been designated in Sri Lanka, in keeping with the Sri Lankan community and Housing Development Settlement Programme, as “Ownership of a Suitable House for all”.
The Matara District was the focal point of the World Habitat Day celebration this year and it was magnificently marked at the Sanath Jayasuriya Stadium in Matara as an island wide habitat day settlement programme under the auspices of Hon.Sajith Premadasa, Minister of Housing and Construction with the participation of Hon.Mangala Samaraweera, Minister of Finance and Media.
Granting of Semata Sevana housing loan, housing aids, “Sonduru Piyasa” bank loans, “Wiru Sumithuru” aids , title deeds including more benefits were made available to more than 1500 beneficiaries for the commemoration of the World Habitat Day. Besides, a special exhibition which reflects the historical backdrop and the current operation of the World Habitat Day and a scholarly conference along with the professionals in housing development field were held under the patronage of Hon.Indika Bandaranayake, Deputy Minister of Housing and Construction.
The week in which the World Habitat Day starts was declared to be “Habitat Week” by the Government and the National Housing Development Authority launched an array of various development programmes, workshops, seminars island-wide throughout the said week. Further, horticulture programmes were also put into practice in model villages constructed under the Semata Sevana Model Village Programme island-wide on 06th October giving the top priority for “National Food Production Week” starting from 06th October.
In addition, to mark the World Habitat Day, the national level awards ceremony for winners in all island arts and essay competitions was held by the National Housing Development Authority and Urban Settlement Development Authority in the Habitat Day Ceremony.