Youths benefiting from 'Thurunu Diriya' loans

Enterprise Sri Lanka, Bank of Ceylon ‘Thurunu Diriya’ loan scheme has given potential small-scale young entrepreneurs an opportunity to face financial problems and reach their dream.

‘Thurunu Diriya’ loan recipient Sandali Kulathunga, 24, has a plant nursery in Kimbissa in Dambulla. She followed the National Vocational Qualification Level 4 certificate course in Plant Nursery Development at Inamaluwa Technical College and a course in Landscaping and Gardening at Matale District Vocational Training Centre, Dambulla. Later, she started a plant nursery in the 4 acre land of her parents, facing Trincomalee - Dambulla main road, with the guidance of her father, who is working at the Agrarian Services Department. She received Rs. 500,000 from the ‘Thurunu Diriya’ loan scheme from which she bought a water pump to obtain water from the Dambulla water project, built a hut to keep plants and a small building for business purposes.

“I easily got through the process of obtaining the loan and Small Enterprise Development Division (SEDD) was very supportive throughout. The SEDD also conducted a two- day training program to educate entrepreneurs on how to conduct a business.” The Bank of Ceylon in collaboration with the Policy Development Office (PDO) of the Prime Minister’s Office, the Central Programme Management Unit (CPMU) of the Ministry of National Policies and Economic Affairs and the Small Enterprises Development Division (SEDD) of the Ministry of Youth Affairs, Project Management and Southern Development implemented the ‘Thurunu Diriya’ loan scheme.

It provides loans without a guarantor and collateral or with lenient guarantor conditions for young entrepreneurs, who possess a degree or a recognized vocational certificate and were in the business for not less than three years. Further details of the loan scheme can be obtained from the Bank of Ceylon branches or the Divisional Secretariats island-wide.