AIESEC SRI LANKA - BadmintonMora ?· “AAUBOWAN “Sri Lanka Reception booklet of AIESEC in Sri Lanka…

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  • AAUBOWAN Sri Lanka Reception booklet of AIESEC in Sri Lanka


    SRI LANKA The Reception Booklet

  • AAUBOWAN Sri Lanka Reception booklet of AIESEC in Sri Lanka


    - Introduction

    - Sri Lanka (Summery)

    o Population o Religion o Geography o Climate o Ecology and Environment o Flora and Fauna o Government and Politics o Peace process o Economy

    - Colombo

    - Arts

    - Food

    - Sri Lanka useful links

    - Useful Information

    o Banks and Money

    o Cost Of Living & Local Prices

    o Tipping

    o Recommendations

    o Transport

    o Clothes

    o Entertainment

    o Electricity

    o Toilets

    o Holidays

    o Health & Medical services

    o Post and telephones

    o Mobile phones

    o Television & Radio

    o Sports

    o Dressing style

    o Insects

    - Sri Lanka useful DOs and DONTs

    - Checklist for a intern

    - AIESEC in Sri Lanka

    - Exchange information for the intern

    o Reception Teams

    o Arrival and Airport Pickup

    o Accommodation

    o Reception and integration activities

    o Sri Lanka useful phrases in Sinhala

  • AAUBOWAN Sri Lanka Reception booklet of AIESEC in Sri Lanka

    Ayubowan, Wanakkam, Welcome Dear new intern!

    We are glad that you have been matched to our beautiful island

    SRI LANKA the Pearl of the Indian Ocean.

    We recommend you to read this booklet carefully.

    If you still have some questions, dont hesitate to ask.

    We are looking forward to seeing you here soon!

    With love, AIESEC in Sri Lanka

    A word from an ex-intern

    It was only a couple of days before the start of my marketing management internship,

    when I found out that I was going to spend a year in Sri Lanka. I didnt know much

    about the country, in fact, I only knew that it lies in the Indian Ocean beneath India,

    that it is an island, that its former name was Ceylon, and that they have AIESEC there.

    However, after receiving an email from a friend, who had been there for one month by

    that time, I decided Sri Lanka was definitely the place for me to go. My criteria? I

    wanted to go far away from home, to a very different culture, for a very long time, and

    do something related to marketing. All my expectations were not only met, they were


    The one thing that matters the most about any kind of internship are people who you

    spend your time with in our case the AIESEC community but gradually also other

    people from the environment where we live. AIESECers are the ones who made my

    integration into their culture and society very easy and comfortable. Although I hate to

    generalize about people (because everybody is very unique) I need to say that Sri

    Lankans are some of the nicest, most hospitable people I have met so far. They try to help

    in any situation, make sure everything is going fine they simply care.

    I would recommend this beautiful island of paradise to any SN in the whole world who

    likes to overcome cultural and personal challenges, learn many new things, and find out

    more about you, because that is an order of the day here.

    I know that some of you might be a little concerned about the safety situation here.

    Media like to exaggerate a bit. I was concerned as well, but because I had generally very

    little knowledge about the country, I decided to trust people here when assuring me of

    no danger. I am glad I did so I feel here just as safe as at home, that is Slovakia. I

    soon learned that if a conflict occurs, it is always only on a national (Sri Lankan) level.

    They have absolutely nothing here against foreigners. You see, if I had not come, I

    would not have learned. So why dont you come and experience for yourself.

    Stefan CHAMRAZ alias Stevo

    Intern from Slovakia 2001/2002

  • AAUBOWAN Sri Lanka Reception booklet of AIESEC in Sri Lanka

    Do you know about Sri Lanka?

  • AAUBOWAN Sri Lanka Reception booklet of AIESEC in Sri Lanka

    Sri Lanka Population and People

    Sri Lanka is a country of really nice and hospitable people, who smile 24

    hours per day and are very warm and sweet. You just have to love them as

    much as they love you.

    - Interns comment

    Ethnic Groups

    Two major ethnic groups in Sri Lanka are Sinhalese and Tamils. Other than

    them there are Muslims and Burghers.


    The Sinhalese constitute about 74% of the population. They speak Sinhala, and

    are predominantly Buddhist or Catholics and have a reputation as easy-going.

    The Sinhalese have a caste system, although it is nowhere near as important as

    it is in India. They either belong to low country, or Kandyan. This low

    country or Kandyan is then divided into several sub castes. But, nowadays caste

    is not an issue except in marriages.


    The Tamils are the second-largest group, constituting about 18% of the

    population. Tamils are predominantly Hindu and speak Tamil. About 50

    million Tamils far more than the whole population of Sri Lanka- live across

    the Palk Strait in India. There are two distinct groups of Tamils. The origins of

    so-called Sri Lanka or Ceylon Tamils go back to the southern Indians who

    came to Sri Lanka around 1000 years ago. The other group is the hill country

    or plantation Tamils whose ancestors were brought to Sri Lanka from India by

    the British to work on tea plantations in 19th century.


    Muslims comprise about 7% of the population. Most of them are Sri Lanka

    Moors, whose presence goes back to Portuguese times and who are probably

    the descendants of Arab or Indian Muslim traders and the rest are Malays

    who are of more eastern. Tamil is the mother tongue of most of them.


    The Burghers are Eurasians, primarily descendants of Portuguese and Dutch.

    For a time, even after independence, the Burghers had a disproportionate

    influence over the political and business life in Sri Lanka, but growing Sinhalese

    and Tamil nationalism has reduced their advantage and many Burghers have

    moved abroad.

    There are also small Chinese and European communities and small,

    downtrodden group of low caste South Indians brought in to perform the most

    menial tasks.


  • AAUBOWAN Sri Lanka Reception booklet of AIESEC in Sri Lanka

    The Wannaiyala-aetto (People of the Forest) are usually referred to in Sri Lanka

    as Veddahs.

    They are the original inhabitants of the country, and their story is one of great

    tragedy. They

    are by no means a homogenous group, sharing a common religion, language

    and culture. And this is one of the reasons some people claim they actually

    dont exist. Some of them live deep in the forests in the south-east, and in recent

    years it has campaigned hard and long for

    recognition of its rights.

    Sri Lanka - Religion

    Religion plays an important part in the life and culture of Sri Lankans.

    The Buddhist majority observe Poya Days (full moon days), once per month

    according to the Lunar calendar. The Hindus and Muslims also observe their

    own holidays. There are many Buddhist temples spread throughout the island

    in addition to numerous mosques, Hindu temples and churches, especially in

    areas where respective communities are concentrated.

    Sri Lanka Geography

    Facts to know:

    Sri Lanka is shaped like a teardrop falling from the southern tip of India. It is

    just 353 km long from north to south and only 183 km at its widest. Its area of

    66,000 sq km is about the same as that of Ireland or Tasmania in Australia.

    It is worth traveling all around the country:

    - visit coastal areas and beautiful beaches (Unawatuna in Galle, Trincomalee,

    the best beaches are on the south-west and east coasts)

    Sri Lanka religiosity



    Buddhism 69%

    Hinduism 15%

    Islam 8%

    Christianity 8%

  • AAUBOWAN Sri Lanka Reception booklet of AIESEC in Sri Lanka

    - climb the highest mountain in the spectacularly beautiful hill country region

    Piduratalagala (2524 m) and Adams Peak (2224 m)

    - travel by train through hilly up-country to Kandy (by observation wagon on

    the back of the train as there is so much to observe on the way)

    - follow the route of Marco Polo through the most catchy part of Sri Lankan

    nature, trip with steam train to Badulla

    Sri Lanka Climate

    - Typical tropical country, very hot, with high humidity that occurs that you are

    Sweating all the time,

    - There are dry and wet seasons, which are influenced by two monsoons

    - From May to August south-west monsoon brings rain to the southern and

    Western coastal regions and the central hill country

    - Dry season is from December till March

    - From October till January the north-east monsoon brings rain to the north

    and east part of the island

    - BUT the weather usually doesnt stick to these seasons, it has changed so

    nothing is sure it often seems to be raining where it should be sunny and vice


    - Sri Lanka suffered from a serious drought, which led to power shortages that

    influenced the industries, but at present things are back to normal with the

    introduction of small scaled thermal power plants

    - The average temperature in Colombo (capital) is about 28 degrees Celsius

    - In the hilly up-country region is much cooler about 20 degrees Celsius or in

    Nuwara Eliya (16 degrees Celsius)

    Sri Lanka Ecology and Environment

  • AAUBOWAN Sri Lanka Reception booklet of AIESEC in Sri Lanka

    There are many factors that contribute towards the destruction of the

    environment in Sri Lanka to a certain extent gem mining, deforestation,

    cultivation, clearance for cultivation, sand mining, prawn farming, etc.

    - Sinharaja (rain-forest) is a World Heritage Site (worth to visit)

    - Sri Lanka has two marine sanctuaries: the Bar Reef and the Hikkaduwa + 24

    wildlife sanctuaries

    - There are laws against marine pollution, trade in endangered species or the

    illegal felling of trees, but the destruction of forests continue due to a growing

    population that demands more land to be cleared for settlement and cultivation

    - There is no waste recycling. People usually throw everything down; you dont

    find many garbage bins here.

    - In some areas you are not allowed to throw plastic or something else what can

    pollute the nature (e.g. Knuckles, national parks)

    - Air in Colombo is quite polluted because of a lot of cars, buses and dust (but

    in some time you will get use to it )

    Sri Lanka - Flora and Fauna

    - Sri Lanka has a diverse plant and animal life with elephants and leopards as

    well as many national parks and reservations, which are the pride of this little


    - The south-western wet zone has a tropical rain-forest with lots of hardwood

    trees, including

    Ebony, teak and silk wood. Here you will find some of the most spectacular

    orchids and many of the plants used in Ayurvedic (traditional) medicine.

    - The central hill zone is cool and damp, with hardy grasslands, rhododendron

    and stunted forests

    - Dry zones are covered by trees with shrubs and dry grasslands that flourish

    with green grass with the first rains.

    - The animals of Sri Lanka are some of the most unusual and varied anywhere.

    (86 species of

    Mammals elephants, leopards, deer, monkeys, sloth bears, Loris, porcupines,

    jackals, flying

    Foxes, wild boars, etc., 450 species of birds, 54 species of fish, 40 species of frogs,

    83 species of

    Snakes, 5 species of turtles, etc.)

  • AAUBOWAN Sri Lanka Reception booklet of AIESEC in Sri Lanka

    - There are nearly 100 protected areas acknowledged by the government all

    around the island due to more than 43 animal species that are endangered

    Sri Lanka Government and Politics

    The Democratic Socialistic Republic of Sri Lanka:

    - gained independence from Britain on 4th of February 1948

    - First republican constitution in 1972

    - Sri Lankas executive president is elected for 6 years and has the power to

    Appoint or dismiss members of the cabinet, including the prime minister and to

    dissolve parliament

    - Members of the parliament are elected by the people for 6 years

    - The country has 8 provinces: Central, North-Central, NorthEastern, North-


    Sabaragamuwa, Southern, Uva and Western

    - The legal system is a complex mix of English common law, Roman-Dutch,

    Muslim, Sinhalese and customary law.

  • AAUBOWAN Sri Lanka Reception booklet of AIESEC in Sri Lanka

    Sri Lanka Peace process

    There had been a war between Sri Lankan government and the Liberation

    Tigers of

    Tamil Eelam (LTTE) almost 20 years in the Northern and Eastern parts of Sri


    These were generally ethnic and religious rather than class conflicts. The

    conflicts in

    Sri Lanka illustrated the operation of some of the most combustible factors in


    Relations: language, religion, long historical memories of tensions and conflict,

    and a

    Prolonged separatist agitation. (but some would argue that its all political )

    The war was esp. on the north and east of the country that is quite destroyed

    and not developed now.

    From February 2002 there have been peace talks between government of Sri

    Lanka and LTTE so situation is quite safe now. People can go to areas which

    were closed to normal people before (Jaffna, Trincomalee,

  • AAUBOWAN Sri Lanka Reception booklet of AIESEC in Sri Lanka

    Sri Lanka Colombo

    Sri Lankas biggest city (two millions people) is the commercial capital of Sri

    Lanka. It holds less of obvious interest than many other parts of the island but

    its a colorful place. Colombo is by no means overwhelming and its centre Fort

    is Distinctly handy and very easy to get around on foot.

    The Capital of Sri Lanka is Sri Jayewardene Pura Kotte, it was made the capital

    of Sri Lanka by Sri Lankas first executive president late J.R.

    Jayawardana.Before that Colombo was the capital under the British and in the

    first four decades of Sri Lankan independence.

    Colombo is broken into 15 postal code areas. Colombos main train station, Fort,

    is for example in Pettah, where many buses start and it is known as Colombo

    11. Then you get for example Bambalapitiya, which is Colombo 4 and so on. It is

    very easy to orient in Colombo that way. For the intern is always useful to buy

    the 73 page A-Z Street Guide and carry it in case you get lost. It includes also

    suburbs of Colombo, where interns usually live.

    Colombo is a normal happening place where all necessary facilities to live

    comfortable are available: ATMs, banks, cinemas (English, Sinhalese), theatres,

    night clubs, sport clubs, fitness centers, cricket grounds, temples, Christian

    churches, Hindu temples, tourist information office, post offices, internet cafes,

    bookshops, libraries, cultural centers, universities, laundry services, etc.

  • AAUBOWAN Sri Lanka Reception booklet of AIESEC in Sri Lanka

    Sri Lanka Arts

    Sri Lankas famous Kandyan dance (nowadays considered to be the national

    dance of Sri Lanka) and kolam (masked dance-drama) have their origin in

    South India, but have developed a uniquely local character. The...


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