gender conference key node

Madu Dissanayake

[ Keynote Speaker ]

Assistant Representative UNFPA
Sri Lanka

Madu is a Social Anthropologist with more than eighteen years of post-qualifying experience & expertise in the areas of International Relations, public policy, social and behaviour change communication, public health, gender & human rights. She has worked in the state & Non-state sectors in the UK and Sri Lanka. She is currently the Assistant Representative of United Nations Population Fund. Before joining UN, She worked as Director for Public Affairs, Policy and Advocacy at the Family Planning Association of Sri Lanka. She also worked with Leonard Cheshire Disability and Westminster City Council in United Kingdom to name a few in her 25-year career; which began as a health science teacher at Ladies College, Colombo in 1995. Madu was also a visiting lecturer at the Colombo University in the Centre for Studies in Human Rights with in Faculty of Law, until she assumed duties with UN.

Her work directly targeted at identifying and addressing policy, systemic and service gaps nationally, regionally and locally. She has developed innovative programmes, established community based networks and developed capacities of organizations, communities and individual women, youth and marginalized communities in several countries. Her work around developing Advocacy plans had helped many programmes & projects to achieve better results.

Madu has held several honorary positions in Civil Society Organisations in UK & Sri Lanka since 2000 and is a strong believer of volunteerism at all levels to address issues around Social exclusion and inequities, building peace, human rights & communal harmony & regeneration.