Ashoka Fellow
Sri Lanka
Fellow Since 2007
Horizon Lanka
    This description of Nandasiri Wanninayaka's work was prepared when Nandasiri Wanninayaka was elected to the Ashoka Fellowship in 2007.
    In rural areas plagued by unemployment, isolation, and fractured schools, Nandasiri Wanninayaka (Wanni) teaches students the skills they need to be competitive in the global marketplace. Wanni found a way to bring modern technology to isolated communities, link villagers to outside networks through email, and use alternative education (with an emphasis on the English language) to foster teamwork, creativity, and self-esteem among students. Wanni’s plans include contracting an outsourcing venture that will employ 1,000 youth, creating access to a free English satellite TV station, and establishing e-commerce so farmers can avoid middlemen and sell their products at market prices. Horizon Lanka Foundation’s innovative methods have attracted international interest and the Sri Lankan government has committed to replicate his model in many parts of the country.
    The New Idea
    The Problem
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