Sunshine Holdings marks World Water Day with two Reverse Osmosis Plant openings

Celebrating the significance of World Water Day, Sunshine Foundation for
Good— the corporate social responsibility (CSR) arm of the diversified conglomerate Sunshine
Holdings (CSE: SUN), commissioned two Reverse Osmosis (RO) Plants in Galgamuwa in the
North Western Province and Medawachchiya in the North Central Province. More than 1500
students and 5000 inhabitants in surrounding villages now have access to over 20,000 litres of
safe and clean drinking water per day through these newly-launched RO Plants at Usgala
Gemunu Maha Vidyalaya and Anuradhapura Sri Sobitha Maha Vidyalaya.
Studies indicate that approximately 400,000 people are currently affected by CKD, of which men
between the ages of 15 – 70 are the most vulnerable. Studies show that providing purified water
is found to be the key solution not only to eliminate CKD but to reverse the effects of those
affected by it.
In such a context, The Foundation has commissioned a total of eight RO plants in the North
Western, North Central, Southern, Central and Uva provinces to date, giving over 20,000
residents in Sella Kataragama, Kataragama, Ambanpola, Handaganawa, Rajanganaya,
Galewela, Galgamuwa and Medawachchiya access to clean drinking water. In this quest, The
Foundation has partnered with the Sri Lanka Navy, who provided expertise, labour and
maintenance to operate these RO Plants. Furthermore, Sunshine has scouted and selected the
locations based on the request letters sent to the SL Navy.
“North Central, North Western, East, Uva, Southern and Northern provinces are continuing to
struggle with an increasing number of cases of chronic kidney disease of uncertain aetiology
(CKDu), with estimates of over 40,000 cases across these provinces being recorded over the
past few years. Poor access to clean drinking water has led to the prevalence of CKDu, and for
decades, people from these regions have been enduring harsh conditions with water-scarcity
continuing. Sunshine Holdings, with the help of the Sri Lanka Navy, has been able to identify
this fundamental issue, and since January 2019, we have been able to take an important part in
the quest towards combating the spread of CKDu in Sri Lanka; through the installation of RO
Sashini Imesha, a student from Usgala Gemunu Maha Vidyalaya, said that more than 2500
people in her area had faced extreme difficulties without having access to clean water. “The
contaminated water has also caused a fast rise in CKDu cases in the area over the last few
years, making the lives of people who are diagnosed with the ailment extremely hard. The
newest RO Plant in our school is a great relief for all of us as we do not have to worry about the
poor quality of water and severe lack of water anymore. On behalf of the community in Usgala, I
thank Sunshine Holdings from the bottom of my heart.”
Sandun Himeth from Medawachchiya, who will be sitting for his Ordinary Level examination this
year, said it is a great gift for his community. “We are fortunate and extremely grateful to
Sunshine Foundation for Good in hearing our need and coming to our assistance when it was
most needed. The RO Plant has the capability to supply safe and clean drinking water for more
than 800 students and close to 3000 inhabitants from surrounding villages. Now that they have
done their part, it is now our greatest responsibility to ensure that this plant is well maintained
and managed for future generations.”

From the outset, Sunshine’s goal has been to guarantee that the company could make a long-
lasting improvement to the lives of students and other communities in surrounding villages. “Our
responsibility as a responsible Sri Lankan conglomerate is to ensure that the basic needs of the
people and communities of this country are fulfilled and their aspirations nurtured. Access to
safe and clean drinking water for these communities is imperative, and we at Sunshine Holdings
are fully committed to doing as much as possible to fulfil this fundamental need and help to ease
the plight of our people,” Govindasamy stated further.
The opening of these plants fitted uniquely as they were handed over to the public on 18 th March
2021 to mark World Water Day, focusing the attention of students and villagers on the
importance of water. This year’s theme, ‘Water and Climate Change’, explores how water and
climate change are inextricably linked. The effort by Sunshine highlighted why we must use
water more responsibly and balance all of society’s water needs while ensuring that the most
needed people do not get left behind.
Sunshine Holdings Group Managing Director Vish Govindasamy, Sunshine Foundation for
Good Consultant Malin Goonetileke, Sunshine Tea Chief Executive Officer Sanjeeva
Saranapala, senior officers from Sri Lanka Navy, principals, teachers and government officials
graced the opening of the two RO plants. Through this project, Sunshine Holdings aims to
provide livelihood development activities, promote appropriate health and sanitation practices,
awareness and knowledge dissemination.
Initiated to commemorate the Group’s 50th anniversary, the Sunshine Foundation for Good
centralises all CSR efforts undertaken by Sunshine Holdings through a sustainability committee
and a project chair with clear objectives to drive change towards sustainability, with health and
education as The Foundation’s two main pillars.

From left: Sunshine Tea Chief Executive Officer Sanjeeva Saranapala, Sunshine
Holdings Group Managing Director Vish Govindasamy and Sunshine Foundation for Good
Consultant Malin Goonetileke
Cutting the ribbon
Vish Govindasamy ceremoniously starting the operations of the plant

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