Social Funds Innovation Notes

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Social Funds Innovation Notes are published informally by the Social Funds Thematic Group of the Human Development Network – Social Protection. These replaced the earlier series called Social Funds Innovation Updates.

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    A Story of Social and Economic Empowerment : The Evolution of “Community Professionals” in Sri Lanka
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2006-09) Munshi, Meena ; Hayward, Natasha ; Verardo, Barbara
    This note explores the critical and innovative role played by 'community professionals' in the village self help learning initiative and Gemi Diriya programs in Sri Lanka. It describes the strategy used by the projects to mobilize and strengthen grassroots resource persons in support of achieving the Bank's mission of poverty reduction and livelihood improvement in rural Sri Lanka. In Gemi Diriya, community professionals are proving to be a driving force behind establishing sound village organizations, building capacity at the village level and promoting villager-villager learning. Institutionalizing the role of grassroots professionals by creating a 'community professional learning and training center' has allowed the program to scale up in a cost-effective and sustainable manner.