The 15th Biennial District 25 conference was held at the beautiful Heritage Hotel, Galle Face Hotel in Colombo, Sri Lanka from 4th to 6th October 2019.  The formal opening ceremony and Gala Banquet was held on the 4th evening amongst a gathering of distinguished Zontians, diplomats, ZI centennial awardees and guests.

ZI VP and District 25 Board Liaison, Ute Scholz was the chief guest for the event and Deshamanaya Radhika Coomaraswamy was the keynote speaker.  Mr Chandra Mohotti, a veteran hotelier, welcomed the guests to the city.  The dignitaries were welcomed into the ballroom by a group of traditional dancers from the Asian International School Z Club.  The event commenced with the lighting of the traditional oil lamp and the chanting of the Jayamangala Gatha, to bring blessings for a successful conference.

The ZI Centennial Anniversary Awardees from the four countries graced the occasion and were presented with their ZI Certificate and a trophy from the district. The country awardees are:

Ms Razia Sultana – Bangladesh

Ms Deborah Edirisinghe – Sri Lanka

Dr Kriti Bharti – India

Ms Bandana Rana – Nepal

Ms Razia Sultana was also the District 25 Centennial Anniversary awardee.

The evening concluded with a toast Zonta International for 100 years of service to women and another 100 years of excellence.

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The Zontian dignitaries being escorted into the ballroom by the Asian International School Z club members, performing a traditional Sri Lankan dance. 

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The lighting of the traditional oil lamp followed by the Asian International School Z club members chanting the Jayamangala Gatha.

The lady in the black saree is the keynote speaker, Deshamanaya Radhika Coomaraswamy.

We also have ZI VP and D25 Board Liaison Ute Scholz.

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The customary flag parade of the four Zonta countries in District 25, the flag of Germany, the country of our ZI Board Liaison, The Zonta International flag, followed by the flags of the 15 clubs and the Z and Golden Z clubs of District 25.

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The Presenters at the Opening Ceremony.

  1. Governor Shahnaz Nathani
  2. Welcome to the City by Mr Chandra Mohotti
  3. Response to the welcomes by Past ZI and ZIF Board Director, Dilruba Ahmed
  4. A drum recital by Naadro
  5. ZI VP and District 25 Board Liaison Ute Scholz
  6. Key Note Speaker, Deshamanaya Radhika Coomaraswamy
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The fabulous evening ends with a toast to Zonta International for 100 years of service to women and another 100 years of excellence.

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  1. Ms Deborah Edirisinghe – Country Awardee – Sri Lanka
  1. Ms Bandana Rana – Country Awardee – Nepal
  2. Dr Kriti Bharti – Country Awardee – India
  3. Ms Razia Sultana – Country Awardee – Bangladesh and District 25 Awardee
  4. Standing ovation to the awardees
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Day 2 of the conference,

A panel discussion and Q&A on the topic “Understanding Best Practices: Ending Child Marriage in South Asia” took place. Each of the four countries were represented at this discussion.

5th Photo – Area 1 Director Arlene Saparamadu making her presentation.

6th Photo – District Treasurer Ratten Abdulhussein

7th photo –  The Game Changer from Sri Lanka, Professor Nilwala Kottegoda

8th Photo – Ms Banadana Rana, ZI Centennial Country Awardee from Nepal speaking about the work she does to empower women.

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  1. Open Forum with ZI VI Ute Scholz
  2. ZI Centennial Country Awardee from Sri Lanka, Deborah Edirisinghe, making her presentation
  3. PDG Manthri Perera presenting the Foundation Ambassador’s Report
  4. CAEC Representative Dilruba Ahmed making her presentation
  5. And we celebrated a birthday. 
  6. Conference Chairman Manthri and Jasmine cutting the birthday cake.
  7. Lots of good wishes from Zontian friends.
  8. More good wishes
  9. Some of our delegates
  10. More delegates
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