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#379018 06/03/10 01:11 PM
Joined: Oct 2004
Posts: 3,888
reaper Offline OP
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I have been giving a lot of thought lately to starting an education fund for Belizean students. As most of you know, Solomon Williams just spent almost a year at our home studying to be commercial pilot. Solomon was a bellhop at the SunBreeze for years, which is how we met him. His dream was to always be a pilot, and now thanks to message board folks, some private donors and a bunch of skydivers, he has been hired by Tropic Air.
I spent many evenings speaking with him about the perspective Belizean kids have regarding their futures. We all know some really bright, articulate young people in Belize that don't have a financial way to achieve their dreams. Many of us here have donated a lot of time, money and effort to the little kids on the island. Maybe it's time to take a look at the older ones and help out their dreams of a career.
Ambergris Caye has given my family so much over the past eight years that we always try to give back.
I know there is a new group FOSP, and a lot of you donate to the schools, SAGA, library, etc. and we get asked for a lot of things for the island.
Here is my plan;
We get some of the local hotels on board to donate rooms in the slower months for donors. So if you donate $1,000us+ you could get 6 or 7 nights stay somewhere in the "off season".
Maybe I could get Tropic or Maya to throw in some free flights.
I'll throw you out of the plane for free. You get the idea. Donate and get some vacation lov'n!
When we get $100,000us built up and in an interest bearing account we start reviewing educational needs of local 18+ year olds to help with their education and careers.
A scholarship committee reviews the applications and distributes up to $10,000us per year to a student for education.
We could have a fundraiser each year and solicit corporate partners in Belize/US/Canada to keep the fund solvent.

So what do you all think? I want to hear the pros and cons of this idea.

On a side note, Solomon's flight training was about $55,000us for his private,commercial, IFR and multi engine tickets. All needed for the local airlines.

Joined: Feb 2003
Posts: 4,001
Rich I like the idea .I will donate a week or two for my place the love shack .At royal palm it got all the Amenites one could want two wide screen tv's cd's steros custom sound speakers vcr;s all in both rooms ..A custom bathroom with huge two person jaquzzi and huge shower with Massage heads .. Ocean view second floor , huge pool ,nice beach ,full kitchen with every toy made for kitchen plus new bbq gas grill .. central air cond the list goes on and on ..

Last edited by captjeff; 06/03/10 02:25 PM.

Living The Dream Every Day!
Joined: Nov 2004
Posts: 1,748
Great idea Rich, you know we are always in for stuff like this.

I have noticed too that there are lots of kids over here at Gallon Jug/Sylvester Village who have the same obstacles, but they do not have the economic influences that come from AC.

Keep us posted.

Change your Latitude
Joined: Apr 2010
Posts: 31
Hi Rich

I too will donate our condo at the Royal Palm for a two weeks stay.

PM me with any other thoughts. I will talk to our mutual freinds Vern and Alisa and see if we can wrangle a flight from them to Gallon Jug, or ...? I will do what I can to help. It may be an idea to contact the Bowan family to see if they are willing to add to the pot with their "upscale" holdings on the mainland.

Joined: May 2000
Posts: 7,051
There is a 6th form (associates degree) option here on the island and there are some university course available in Belize and the Caribbean. If this fund could be linked/supplemented with other scholarships then more options will open for these youngsters.

Technically, being British Common Wealth citizens there may be educational options open in the UK and other commonwealth nations as well as the Caribbean. Foreigner tuition is somewhere in the region of $30,000 US per year for many courses.

Joined: Oct 2004
Posts: 3,888
reaper Offline OP
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I'm thinking about VoTech type of courses also. EMT/First Aid, Flying, bartending, hotel management, small engine/mechanical/boat engine repair, aircraft mechanic, computer skills/web development, office machine/computer repair, plumbing, electrical, carpentry etc.
Real classes that can land them real opportunities on the island and mainland.
Are there schools in Belize that offer those types of classes? I know there are no flying schools or A & P training in Belize, yet two very busy local airlines that need qualified employees.
Do Belizean students know what financial aid is available for them to apply for? Is there a guidance councilor at the high school?

Joined: May 2000
Posts: 7,051
If there are guidance councilors around we sure didn't bump into any. There were plans to put a votech college in San Pedro, but standard issue of not enough money.

Some of those skills can be sought in neighbouring Guatemala, Mexico and Cuba. Of course folks will need to brush up on their Spanish skills.

Joined: Feb 2009
Posts: 2,972
Put us on the list for donations. Get it opperational.

Reality is only an illusion that occurs due to a lack of alcohol
Joined: Oct 2004
Posts: 3,888
reaper Offline OP
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Amanda, that's an interesting point about the Votech college. Maybe if we raised $100,000us and the GOB matched $100,000us we could start a votech school. Cheaper than getting students to different countries for study. Just a random thought.

Joined: May 2006
Posts: 3,299
Great idea and much needed. HC school works to get scholarships for their kids so they can go on to high school. Definitely so much more work/help needed in this area.

San Pedro based Belize Blog since 2007 - great travel resources & discounts

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