The children of Belize

Posted By: SuzyQ

The children of Belize - 01/21/05 03:40 PM

Just returned from 12 of the most exhilarating days my husband and I have spent in years. We started out at the Great House in Belize City, went to the Cayo and explored Santa Elana and San Ignacio, went to Tikal, climbed caves and then went to AC. Looked up Daniel and went to Lamani, snorkeled the reef, ate more variations of beans and rice and coconut rice than I knew existed! Drank lots of Beliken and rum. laugh Came home and it was snowing and 15degrees. This morning it was 7! But, the one thing that Joe and I talk about that sticks out in our minds is the children! We have not seen kids with such big smiles in years! They run and play, small children and older alike, and they are not afraid! They are friendly and happy. They have a trust in us that the kids in the US are not allowed to have and I haven't seen that in the faces of children for years. For that smile alone, I will go back!
Posted By: Scott

Re: The children of Belize - 01/21/05 03:54 PM

Hi SuzyQ (that's my wife's nickname, too!)... Love your thoughts about AC's children... For 20 years we have travelled/dived all over the western Caribbean and many times have had the same thoughts... I don't know who's better off: Spoiled American kids? or kids from Utila, Guanaja or AC who walk on the beach to school, fish in the ocean and go barefoot... As an adult, I know which one I'd like to be!!
Posted By: Ivana Snorkel

Re: The children of Belize - 01/21/05 04:58 PM

Thanks for the topic on children. We are looking forward to our boys, who will be 5 and 7, making some Belizean friends and learning a little about what life is like for children there on our visit next week. Also thanks to those who have posted photos including the playground at the park in San Pedro. It looks fantastic. I think we'll be spending some time there!
Posted By: fuzzy_navel

Re: The children of Belize - 01/21/05 05:55 PM

SuzyQ - We had the same exact feelings. I will never forget the little boys diving in the lake in Guatemala and how happy they were to show off for us or the children that would wave to us in their yards as we passed by.
Posted By: HavinFun

Re: The children of Belize - 01/21/05 08:14 PM

Wow! fuzzy_navel - only 2 sentences laugh
(BTW I love the stories of your trip)
Posted By: Chloe

Re: The children of Belize - 01/21/05 08:45 PM

Our family has a large picture album of the Ambergris Children. We still smile and feel warmth in those darling eyes and smiles laugh smile .
Posted By: Ernie B

Re: The children of Belize - 01/21/05 08:51 PM

SusieQ, etal. If you love AC and the kids, please see our post "San Pedro Social Club" or "SPSC post under the general chat thread. You may like what you see. smile
Posted By: SuzyQ

Re: The children of Belize - 01/22/05 08:06 PM

You know, I have spent some time wandering through thoses lines and I have had some chuckles. You are happy children! I have even browsed through the pictures and admired many a fish and floozy suits. I told my husband we may need to take a trip to Texas in May!
Posted By: Ernie B

Re: The children of Belize - 01/23/05 12:15 AM

We have a place for ya, so Yal'l come on down. We may even have a golf tournement !
Posted By: klcman

Re: The children of Belize - 01/23/05 12:45 AM

and I hear that IM is going to play Rodney Dangerfield's role!
Posted By: kippe

Re: The children of Belize - 01/23/05 04:40 AM

Sorry to put a damper on your idea of the smiling children. What you have to understand is that education is not free in Belize and a lot of kids are happily playing,fishing, doing whatever because their parents can't afford to send them to school or supervise them, because they are too busy trying to make a living and the kids are doing what kids love most, play! And unfortunately a lot of them grow up and can't get a job and become the "beach bums" you sometimes complain about. That said, yes, Belizian kids are generally happy, loved and adorable, school or no school!
Posted By: SP Daily

Re: The children of Belize - 01/23/05 08:21 AM

Every kid on Ambergris Caye has an equal opportunity to attend school. If their parents can't afford to pay for uniforms and books then Lions or someone else will cover their costs. No kid is ever left out.
Posted By: Lan Sluder/Belize First

Re: The children of Belize - 01/23/05 12:08 PM

That may be true in San Pedro. But the latest figures I've seen for Toledo indicate that about one-half of kids there don't even finish primary school. Half of the teachers in Toledo district haven't gone beyond high school themselves.

And there are a lot of kids around Belize who don't have the money for uniforms and books, especially beyond primary school.

There are about 85,000 kids in schools at all levels in Belize, including something like 65,000 in primary and 13,000 or 14,000 in high school.

The situation in Belize is certainly better than in a lot of countries in the region, but the situation varies around the country.

--Lan Sluder
Posted By: mim

Re: The children of Belize - 01/24/05 01:43 AM

Beautiful obersrvations all around.
I have always noticed that the children in poorer countries shine with a special internal light as they walk hand in hand with their siblings unlike here in the US where sibling rivialry is the resounding norm. Having too much, seems to create more divisiveness than unity. I can only imagine the light upon light that shines if these unspoilid children are also given appropriate oppertunities. You have a gift to get to have the chance to be a part of such beauty although the work is difficult and far from done.
I have been looking into starting a craft business in Belize and since my youngest child is currently a freshman in High School, his education is appearing to be a primary issue to my timing.
- Mim
Posted By: kippe

Re: The children of Belize - 01/25/05 02:45 AM

Jesse, maybe you can get the word out to the parents that are not aware that they can get help. Because a lot of them don't know that they can and would love to see their kids in school.
Posted By: SP Daily

Re: The children of Belize - 01/25/05 02:55 AM

If you know about kids not in school why don't you help them get enrolled?
Posted By: kippe

Re: The children of Belize - 01/27/05 03:53 AM

Believe you me I have tried and with no luck! You seem to know things I don't so I thought you might be a better person for the job.
Posted By: SP Daily

Re: The children of Belize - 01/27/05 03:56 AM

Phone me and I'll tell you how.
Posted By: soxfans

Re: The children of Belize - 02/14/05 04:14 AM

Wow, Suzy Q, so funny you say that about the kids. On our second day on the island I turned to my husband and said, "Is it just me or does it seem like the children here smile more than the kids we see at home?" (We don't have any yet) Made me think a lot about all the "stuff" we have here, as well as all the pressures. I think a big part of our pressure is how to be able to get our hands on more stuff! I will carry that experience with me for life.
Posted By: Ernie B

Re: The children of Belize - 02/14/05 01:22 PM

For more on San Pedro's kid's, visit our website.
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