AIA One Billion Story

Chathuri Munaweera's story

2021 dot 3-min read

Chathuri Munaweera, AIA Sri Lanka

“Our aim is to provide the best possible support for our female colleagues, at times in their life where they need it most.”

With women’s participation in the Sri Lankan labour force below the global average, Chathuri Munaweera is blazing a trail for gender equality and gender parity in the region.

Chathuri was recognised as one of 16 trailblazers driving gender equality across the private sector in Sri Lanka through the IFC-DFAT SheWorks Sri Lanka Partnership.

“It is not about fixing the basics and having the best support during key stages of motherhood,” says Chathuri, “but also ensuring that there is room to grow in your career when you return to work.”

SheWorks contributed to more equal and respectful workplaces for 170,000 employees across 15 of Sri Lanka’s leading organisations. Within the two years of the partnership, 12,000 more women were added to the workforce and SheWorks companies increased their share of women on boards by one third.1

“Helping our female colleagues return to work and nurturing them to get what they want from their career is crucial for us as a business, and for the region as a whole,” says Chathuri. “We need talented women in our organisation!”

Through the leadership of trailblazers like Chathuri, AIA Sri Lanka is moving towards greater gender parity: recruiting more women to the workforce, building a talented leadership pipeline and offering family-friendly benefits to all staff. These policies, among others, have led to AIA Sri Lanka being recognised as an employer of choice, winning the title of Best Workplace for Women in the Great Place to Work awards for four consecutive years and Women Friendly Workplace Award in conjunction with and CIMA Sri Lanka.

1. Sri Lankan Businesses Advance Gender Equality: SheWorks Sri Lanka Private Sector Partnership