Mission 11 to Stann Creek
Mission 11 to Stann Creek District was completed on December 11th when the Mission Team finished setting up 19 Resource Centers in 13 days in three different Districts of south central Belize. Additional product was sent to three other schools in Stann Creek District: books to the Ministries of Education in Stann Creek and Toledo Districts: computers to the Rotary Club of Sunrise Belize City to open a computer lab: and computers and parts to construct computers to the Tech School in Belmopan.
It is estimated that over 10,000 children will benefit from the resource centers set up in their schools. Additionally… teachers, administrators, parents and communities will benefit by having better prepared students that are ready to face every day challenges.
The 140 computers for the Computer Lab and Tech school as well as those for the 19 school resource centers were donated by the Believe in Belize organization. All the other educational equipment was donated by the Rotary Clubs of District 6600. All the costs of the mission (shipping, rental car with gas, some items that were not donated) was borne by the Rotary Clubs of Sylvania, Elyria, and Perrysburg and supported by a District 6600 Matching Grant. All mission team members paid their own expenses.
The partners in this mission are:
- Rotary Clubs of Sylvania, Elyria and Perrysburg, Rotary International District 6600
Rotary E-Club of One World
- Rotary Clubs of Dangriga/Hopkins, Placencia and Sunrise Belize City, Rotary International District 4250
- MESA, the International Entity of District 6600 in Northwest Ohio
- Believe in Belize
- The Primary and Preschools of Stann Creek, Belize and Toledo Districts
- The Ministries of Education, Stann Creek and Toledo District Offices
Mission in Pictures
The product was shipped from our MESA warehouse in a 40’ container… similar to the one shown above. Scott Salyers and Gary Davis made the arrangements for the shipping on our end and Judy Williams made all the arrangements to receive and store the container in Belize until the team could arrive to start setting up the Resource Centers.
The container was unloaded and stored at the Citrus Products of Belize plant. This major operation concentrates orange juice and then sends it to Europe. It is about 9:30 AM on Sunday, distribution day and the fork lift driver is unloading everything from temporary storage in the 53’ Trailer. We asked the schools to come at 1:30 PM for pickup, but some school administrators were already waiting for their product… 4 hours early.
Will Mosby, Rotarian from Rotary E-Club One World and Mario Bull sort through the computers to insure that each site gets the appropriate equipment to operate their computers.
Everything is set up and we are ready to distribute. Of the 19 schools asked to pick up that day, 17 made it. One called and told us the road was impassible and they could not possibly pick up that day. In the end we took a 45 minute boat ride (with two boats) to deliver and set up at Monkey River.
Each school signed an Inventory Sheet for their product. A copy of the Inventory sheet was sent to the Ministry of Education (Central and Local Office), the Managing Authority,
Resource Centers International, the Rotary Clubs of Dangriga/Hopkins and Placencia.
After distribution the Mission Team visited each school. This is Elcedia Awe’s 3rd Mission and is our ‘social butterfly’ as she knows everyone and is a great asset in helping the pre-school teachers integrating their product into the classroom curriculum.
Each school we visited was unique, having different challenges and opportunities. One thing that I noticed over the years of visiting the schools is the progress being made toward making the education process better for the students. This was demonstrated by better trained teachers, better equipment and a more stimulating educational environment.
The televisions are a big hit. Although it varied greatly from school to school… the average child did not have a television at home. What was rewarding is that the teachers understood that the television can be used as a learning tool, not just entertainment.
Elcedia helping set up a library from the shelving we built and the books we brought.
The exercise mats are an inviting surface to read on and are greatly appreciated.
Will Mosby our IT specialist worked many hours on getting the computers ‘internet ready’. Although we recommend not using the computers on the internet we realize that most of them will be in the end. Each computer has educational software installed… so internet usage is not necessary.
Will and I had the weekend off. I took an afternoon off to visit Roseville, an isolated Mennonite community located in a large valley in the Maya Mountains. The river was too deep for our Jeep to cross so I swam. I could have taken the pulley system and kept my feet dry.
So many immigrants have been coming to Belize that some schools have become overwhelmed by the influx. Thus children are being bused from one community to another because of overcrowding. Some schools we visited were brand new and a model for what school facilities should look like. Other schools were old and overcrowded, presenting principals with unique operational challenges.
This is one of two private schools we placed resource centers in. Schools in Belize are either government, church or private. Each school in turn is run by its own Managing Authority. As an example the government schools are run by the Government Managing Authority, the Catholic schools by the Catholic Managing Authority… and so on. The funding for the schools comes from different sources. The Ministry of Education (in general although not always in practice) builds the schools and also pays for the salaries of administration and staff as well as the curriculum books. The Managing Authorities and schools pay for the day to day operation such as utilities, repairs, computers, non –curricula books, sporting equipment, supplies etc.
Our efforts fulfill the vital need for the educational product not supplied by the government. These products help insure a well rounded learning, physical growth and social development experience for young students.
Mission 12 to Corozal District
Resource Centers International next mission is scheduled for early April 2019 to the Corozal District of Belize in partnership with the Rotary Club of Corozal. We will open 18 to 20 Resource Centers in Pre and Primary schools during this mission. We are now forming a team to participate in the mission. If interested please contact Mel Honig, Project Coordinator, email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Educational Equipment and Materials
||Rotary Club of
|Books, VHS tapes
||Avon Lake Library
Thank you for the many anonymous donations that were left at the Fostoria warehouse.
PRODUCT DISTRIBUTION LIST
Mission 11 to Stann Creek District, Belize
Pre and Primary Schools receiving resource centers
- Gales Point Government School
- Evershine Preschool
- Santa Cruz Government School
- Our Lady of Bella Vista RC School
- Sacred Heart R.C. School
- St. Mathews Anglican School
- Benguche Government Pre-School
- Holy Angels RC School
- Peninsula International Academy
- Red Bank Christian
- San Juan Bosco RC
- St Alphonsus
- Holy Family (application on PDF)
- Light of the Valley Baptist
- St. John’s Memorial School
- St Stephen’s Anglican
- San Isidro
- Pomona Hope
- Silk Grass Methodist School
Schools that received some educational materials
- Epworth Methodist
- United Community
- Mullins River School
Stann Creek District Schools that received resource centers during a previous mission
- Solid Rock Christian Academy
- Maya Mopan Primary School
- Hope Creek Methodist
- Epworth Methodist Preschool
- United Community Primary
- Ministry of Education, Stann Creek Office (books)
- Ministry of Education, Toledo Office (books)
- Rotary Club of Belize City Sunrise (computers for computer lab)
- Rotary Club of Placencia, Tech School in Belmopan (CPUs/parts to build CPUs and computers)