Champaka Sri Harsha Vithananarachchi
Posted: 3 March 2014
Champaka Sri Harsha Vithananarachchi is Assistant Secretary to the President at the Presidential Secretariat of the Government of Sri Lanka, part of the Sri Lanka Administrative Service. Champaka manages many Development Administrative areas including Citizen Services, Poverty Alleviation, Climate Change and Natural Resources Management.
Champaka’s academic background was in the Sciences but he wanted to enhance his knowledge and experience in Development Administration. Champaka, an Australian Development Scholarship (ADS) recipient who started his degree in 2009, believes the ADS helped him build the skills, confidence and knowledge to influence Sri Lanka’s development road-map.
Champaka studied a Master of Environment at the University of Melbourne. The program required him to engage with nine faculties; enabling him to access many Environment, Development, Governance and Management subjects taught by academics with strong credentials in their fields. The program helped Champaka build his knowledge and technical skills in policy development, planning, research, analysis and project management. His growth in these areas also fostered his professional decision-making and his self-confidence.
Furthermore, Champaka’s study experience in Australia helped him improve his English communication skills and broaden his cultural understanding.
When he returned to Sri Lanka and took up his position as Assistant Secretary to the President of Sri Lanka, Champaka applied his newly-developed competence to policy planning and implementation. He is now working towards ISO 9001:2008 accreditation for the Citizens Service Division to ensure quality service delivery by the Presidential Secretariat.
Champaka is keen to be part of the Sri Lankan AusAID alumni and to contribute to preparing future scholars for their Australian experience and to helping them reintegrate into Sri Lanka again on their return.