‘The Sri Lanka Friendship Society, Waikato In.’ held its 29th Annual General Meeting on Saturday, October 1st, 2022, at the Hillcrest Chapel in Hamilton. The former president, Davinda Mahavithana, began the AGM by emphasising the significance of the friendship society. This aims to establish a space where Sri Lankans who have immigrated to New Zealand from various regions, positions, and circumstances can make new friends. This friendship may be the most rewarding feeling of being a member of the Friendship Society.
Davinda thanked all the present members and the departing committee: Ruwan Fernando (Vice President), Harindu Lorensu (Secretary), Susith Fernando (Treasurer), Migara Weeraratne(Immediate past president), Jagath Pilippuhewa, Lakshan Wakista, Nikesha Palihawadana, Nuwan Dayananda, Malsha Maduwanthi, Asanga Kumara, Shani Fernando, Chathurika Samarakoon, Sithika Fernando, for their assistance throughout the year 2021. He acknowledged the committee members who served in various but essential positions within the organisation, as well as the members who supported various events in numerous ways.
Despite the greatest challenges posed by COVID, SLFS was able to successfully complete the “Yellow Pages Project”, “Pahan Tharu Rayak Christmas Fiesta”, “Dinner Dance”, “Poson Program and a cultural show”. Last year, they were able to make great contributions to society by conducting the “Covid-19 Awareness Program”, “Graval Club”, “Chess Club”, “Badminton Club”, “Traditional Kandian Dancing Class”, “Helping Sri Lanka Project” and “Covid-19 Pandemic Dry Food Distribution”.
The former president thanks the funding organisations (COGS, Creative Waikato, Hamilton City Council, Lion Foundation, Lotteries, Trust Waikato, Wel Energy and Lottery COVID-19 Community Wellbeing Fund) and the auditor, Junead Wasana, and the consultant, Clifford Lazarus, in particular.
Finally, the new committee was elected for the years 2022–2023. Shamal Fernando(President), Dinali Ranmadugala (Vice president), Sandun Samaratunga(Secretary), Niel Perera(Treasurer), Davinda Mahavithana ( Immediate past president) , Dasith Ranasinghe, Geeth Croos, Kapila Alahakoon, Prasad Wickramasinghe, Priyantha Hema Kumara, Ranga Kulasooriya, Roshan Perera, Sithika Fernando.
Sandun Samaratunga (Secretary)
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We, Sri LankaNZ, wish them all the best for a successful year ahead.