Thousands of tsunami-affected entrepreneurs have received accredited business management training under the brand of "Start and Improve Your Business" (SIYB), since the 2004 Tsunami. The entrepreneurs benefited by receiving business start up or business improvement training in which the application of better business practices such as business planning, record keeping, costing, marketing, stock control, and buying were imparted to enable them to reach their financial goals.
The training was provided by ILO certified SIYB trainers. The SIYB training is specially designed for adult learning so that in-depth knowledge is gained on how to re-start the business or how to improve the business and support them in introducing new knowledge practices in their own business. The SIYB training is being undertaken through partnership with International Labour Organization, The Ceylon Chamber of Commerce, Federation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry of Sri Lanka (FCCISL), and World Vision. The support schemes such as supply of equipment, grants and loans, and marketing linkages provided by the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce and FCCISL were able to add value to this training.
2240 entrepreneurs had made excellent progress by attending the SIYB training.
Mr. Jayantha Abeyaratne Project Manager, The Ceylon Chamber of Commerce, said that the training was helpful for the entrepreneurs to re-structure their business in a focused manner and set up a benchmark to monitor the progress of their business, which was a lacking factor in any enterprise at this level.
Mr. Sam Stembo Project Director of back-to-business project of FCCISL, pointed out that the business plan drawn up at the 5-day SIYB training had helped to manage their business systematically and also to apply for a loan to any financial institution. The SIYB training intervention had added advantages of increasing the entrepreneurs' motivation, and improving the business networks and exchange of experiences with other business people in the sector.
According to Chief Executive Officer of the Start and Improve Your Business (SIYB) Association of Sri Lanka, an affiliate of the global ILO-SIYB program, Mrs. Swarnamali Abeysuriya, the SIYB training provided for these affected entrepreneurs had helped not only to restart or build back their businesses but also to carry them out in a more viable manner.