Vision - The Vision of the Small Fishers Federation, (Sudeesa) ‘Social transformation of the small scale fishing and farming communities with access to equal opportunities in order to achieve fully fledged development of individuals and their families’.
Mission - Sudeesa operates in a modest way to provide awareness, knowledge, skills and commitment where necessary, for social transformation. The fishers and farmers including women and youngsters who benefit from the Sudeesa programmes are encouraged to explore personal, collective, structural, cultural and ecological factors which are significant for social transformation and geared towards to sustainable social economic and ecological development.
Goal - The goal of Sudeesa is to improve the social and economic living conditions of all the coastal and inland fisher communities and associated farming communities of Sri Lanka. Sudeesa aims to harness the full potential of the small-scale fisher and farming population – specially the women, youngsters and children – by providing care and education and introducing new fields of subsidiary occupations and self-reliance activities in order to improve their standard of living, both socially and economically
Family is First - Family is the base for social sustainability. If the family lacks in basic needs, members suffer from destitution, lack of social recognition, discrimination by social forces and neglect. Lack of social sustainability affects economic sustainability in the family. If women are destitute, or youth are idle in the families. There is no proper family cohesion. This leads to the absence of healthy participation in decision making in the development process of their families. Therefore the Sudeesa has formulated all its policies to strengthen the family unit in the society.
Community is Central - The fishing and farming Communities are central to use and management of their own resources. They use resources for livelihoods and therefore community participation is a prerequisite for community based sustainable resource management and wise use. Community participation means - people are the proprietors and decision makers. Participation must not be induced or co-opted. People must be the subjects not the objects of development initiatives. Participation is the essence of responsible stewardship of natural resources and its wise use. Therefore, all the activities of Sudeesa are implemented through village organizations based on community visioning and their decision-making.
Natural Resources are the Key - Natural resources are the basis for sustainable livelihood development and a crucial aspect of the food production and life support system. Sudeesa has formulated its policies and operational policies incorporating the principle of regeneration of natural resources for sustainable livelihoods. For the sustainable regeneration of natural resources, Community responsibility must be developed. Sudeesa believes that the citizens of the country must help to conserve and protect natural resources and also aim to regenerate these valuable resources.
Partnership - Partnership principles are incorporated into Sudeesa activities. Sudeesa works with community, local government and all stakeholders of the development process, nationally and internationally. Sudeesa promotes gender equity and gender balance and respects indigenous knowledge and wisdom. One third of Sudeesa benefits go to women, one third to youth and one third to children. The village organizations, as collaborating groups undertake for implementation of all the activities and involve as many as local organized groups to ensure ownership of the activities are transferred to the community. Sharing responsibilities and participatory planning activities with women and youth are considered vital for social and economic sustainability.
Empowerment - Empowerment policy is the key in social, economic and environment sustainability. Sudeesa enables women, youth and all stakeholders to make decisions that affect them both at their own level and at higher levels through their own organizations
Village Based Organization - In order to achieve the vision, mission and goal, theSudeesa works from grass root level upwards, using a federal structure of village-based organizations. By organizing the fishing and farming community in village organizations, it empowers them to tackle together the different challenges that they have faced. These organizations are developed as coops with legal entities for full plagued development.
Members are the decision makers - The Members are the decision - makers and "own" all the therefore are committed to making the entire programme succeed . the Federation uses an integrated approach to address the different challenges the fishery communities. Activities are defined to achieve results on education, health and socio-economic issues, which together should lead to sustainable social and economic living conditions.
Financial Support and Training Facilities - In their , the village organizations are supported and guided by SFFL and are offered the use of the financial and training facilities of the Federation. Furthermore, the federation aims to influence operational policies and strategic management in different areas of development by participating in platforms at village , divisional, district and national level.
Federal Structure - The federal structure of the Small Fishers Federation unites the members of different communities at village ,district and national level. An individual member can benefit from this , economically and socially. Since members are informed of issues which affect their future needs and their welfare, they make their views known to the district body of Federation or directly to the national head office , which can address to the government nationally, and other policy authorities at a district, division or village level.