"On behalf of all Sri Lankans, we would like to thank you for your generosity in meeting with us."
Kapila Rasnayaka takes his role of cultural ambassador seriously.
Kapila is one of four social media influencers from Sri Lanka who recently traveled to Portland through the International Visitors Program. He was identified as a leader in his community and sponsored by the U.S. Department of State to travel, learn best practices, and create an international network of professional resources.
Back home in Sri Lanka, Kapila focuses on educating children on social justice issues including gender equality and environmental sustainability. He describes himself as a “social reformer” who puts together a variety of art therapy workshops to help empower the next generation.
Throughout his exchange Kapila was eager to share stories and cultural nuances in Sri Lankan culture. To him, being on an international exchange was more than his professional development opportunities. It was a way to represent his home country on the other side of the world and educate Oregonians about his cultural heritage.
Many of these professional meetings left a lasting impression on the work Kapila hopes to accomplish in Sri Lanka. In particular-meeting with Muse Storytelling in NE Portland helped Kapila to better understand how video content can encourage positive social change. When he returns home, Kapila plans on expanding his YouYube channel, Voices of Humans, to document everyday stories of working class Sri Lankan people.
"This exchange has been a turning point in my life. I would like to show my respect to all the people who contributed to my journey here in the U.S. because I understand that it takes a lot of time, money, and effort. I feel that I have a responsibility now to use my platform to do more good things and make a difference."
Annual International Visitors
Countries Represented by International Visitors
Volunteers, Hosts, & Community Partners