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Specials & Events
5 hours ago
Great & Exciting News for Tour Guides, Tour Operator's, Resort's, & General Public.

Basic Life Support: Cardiopulmonary Resucitation & First Aid Training Course Happening on Saturday Jun 19, 2021 from 10:00 Am to 10:00 PM at the Lion's Den infront of Manely's Ice Cream on Barrier Reef Drive.

We will be Having 2 Sessions one starting at 10:00 Am and the other Starting at 6:00 PM, please feel free to contact us and let us know which class fits ur Schedule, limited spaces Available on each Class.

We are certified & Vetted by the Belize Tourism Board.

Remember Doing all the Components of the Training is Vital as is having all the equipment & Supplies to teach Students, all of this is important for you to learn and be prepared to Save a Life, we as Students must ensure that our Instructors are Fully Prepared, do not settle for Less.

Our Company the Oxygen Safety & Training Services have invested heavily in our Equipment, Supplies & Materials to be able to offer the Best Training to our Valued Students as seen in our Photos & Videos....

If you are interested in becoming certified, please feel free to contact us at anytime.

Abner Bacab
Medical First Responder
BLS, CPR & FA Instructor
Cell: 615 2998
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Specials & Events
6 hours ago
The Theme and Logo Competition for the 2021 September Celebrations is accepting submissions through June 25th.

In commemoration of the 40th anniversary of Belize's Independence and the 223rd Anniversary of the Battle of St. George's Caye, the National Celebrations Commission announces the 2021 Theme Competition and the Logo Design Competition!

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Caye Caulker
6 hours ago
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Please ensure that you comment the name of the father under the original post on the Caye Caulker Village Council Facebook page. We close nomination on June 18th, 2021 at 12:00 noon. The father's must be living on the island and may be questioned for verification. Be sure to watch and to see if your father was a winner.

Here is the link to the Facebook post you should make a comment under:
https://www.facebook.com/TeamCayeCaulker/photos/a.1715396992044048/2913163025600766/
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News
6 hours ago

The upper management of the KHMH has been decimated in just a few days - and, tonight, there is some concern in the medical community about the leadership of Belize's national referral hospital.

7News has confirmed that the KHMH Board of Directors voted this week not to renew the contract of CEO Michelle Cox Hoare. That contract expired at the end of this month. As of this evening, she has gone on leave and will not return. So, today was her last day, leaving the hospital without a substantive CEO tonight.

But, that wasn't the only contract the board decided not to renew. They also did not renew the Director of Nursing, matron Charlene Banks's contract. She's been at the hospital for decades, but now she will leave - in July. The decision is notable in view of the current nursing shortage. And, as the most senior administrative staff - Banks would also now likely be expected to hold over as CEO - even though she's also on the way out.

And the executive axe also came down on Candice Miller, the Director of Human Resources. The board also refused to renew her contract which expires in August.

And, somewhere in the middle of all this, the recently hired Financial Controller Mike Thomas - chose to resign. So, the hospital's upper management has been basically wiped out, with only one senior manager still remaining on staff beyond the summer.

It may look pretty dire, but today Courtney Menzies spoke via Zoom with the Chairman of the Board and he said that it's really just a process of institutional renewal:

Dr. Andre Sosa, Chairman, KHMH Board
"Really it's not a crisis as you might imagine. The fact is that a number of contracts come up for renewal; the CEO for June, the nursing director for July and the human resources director for August. The board has made a determination that all contracts particularly middle and upper management level will now need to be advertised and that in no way means that there is any dissatisfaction with any particular director, but rather as a common policy that is how it needs to be done going forward. The purpose of that is to ensure that the very best candidates will get the job."

Reporter
"But is this an opportune time to be changing such positions such as the CEO and the nursing director, considering we are still in the middle of a pandemic and still dealing with covid?"

Dr. Andre Sosa, Chairman, KHMH Board
"I am very much conscious of that, particularly because I come from a clinical background and certainly any decision that is made has to be well balance so as to avoid destabilizing the hospital. I am very sensitive to that and in my role as the chairman I would do my best to ensure that that does not happen."

Reporter
"But these contracts are ending in the upcoming months - this month and you say July and August. Shouldn't these posts have been advertised months before so that somebody could have started training to meet these standards?"

Dr. Andre Sosa, Chairman, KHMH Board
"Certainly, there is a valid point there. However, either you are able to do the job or not. So, anybody who fills these positions will have to come with their requisite knowledge and experience, because your point is well taken - this is not a time for anyone to be learning on the job and I share that view as well."

Reporter
"But the case of the CEO whose leaving like right now, shouldn't there have been somebody already hired so there is not that period of time without a CEO, it could just seamlessly just transition to somebody else."

Dr. Andre Sosa, Chairman, KHMH Board
"It's been a process; the board is relatively new. That's not an excuse, but it's been a process. Having said that, there are people already working within the institution who are ably capable of holding over until such time as a decision is made as to the position of CEO."

We honed in on the nurse shortage as well, asking the chairman if it was necessary to remove the Nursing Director in the midst of a nurse shortage. He explained that she will be considered along with other candidates.

Dr. Andre Sosa, Chairman, KHMH Board
"Certainly, there are shortages of nurses in the country. That's a given and that's an issue I've raised in the last few months trying to raise awareness for that. Having said that, we do have a cadre of excellent professional nurses and what we are looking to do is to ensure that from that group of nurses that are available that we pick, the very best, which is not to say that we won't necessarily be hiring the same nursing director, but the board feels that it needs to have the opportunity to interview all those candidates who are available so to satisfy for themselves that they have the very best candidate to do the job."

The Chairman said that the financial controller did not list his reasons for his resignation, and that his post will be advertised as well.

The new acting CEO will be announced on Monday.

Channel 7

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Travel
6 hours ago
Belize is preparing to welcome Carnival Vista, which is operated by Carnival Cruise Line, to Belize City on July 7, 2021. The ship will embark from Galveston, Texas and will be the first ship to call on Belize since the cruise industry in our region was suspended over a year ago. This is encouraging news for thousands of Belizeans that work in the tourism sector who are looking forward to welcoming cruise guests to our shores once again.

The health and safety of Belizeans and visitors is paramount as cruise tourism resumes. Carnival Vista will operate with at least 95 percent of its passengers and all of its crew having been vaccinated, and there will be rigorous protocols in place for disembarking passengers. The health and safety protocols that were recently released by the Belize Tourism Board (BTB) will guide the restart of cruise operations in Belize. These protocols outline the necessary adjustments and adaptations to be undertaken at each step of the cruise cycle - from home port, to destination and return. Under these protocols, which adhere to the Centers for Disease Control guidelines, as this is a fully vaccinated ship a travel bubble will not be implemented. Cruise passengers will be allowed to go on both guided and self-guided tours and Gold Standard approved operations will be allowed to provide service to these passengers.

In order to ensure that the tourism sector is adequately prepared to provide a safe and secure experience for the passengers, crew and the destination, the BTB will offer online training sessions over the next few weeks.

Tourism industry stakeholders are encouraged to keep abreast of real time information on cruise ship calls to Belize Ports via the BTB Cruise App: https://www.btbcruiseapp.com/ as these are changing daily.

The BTB and the Ministry of Tourism & Diaspora Relations are committed to the full recovery of the cruise industry to Pre-COVID numbers, and to enhance the Belize tourism product to make it more competitive within the region.
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Corozal
6 hours ago
NEW PROPERTY OWNERS

Property Owners in Corozal Town are reminded that under Section 10 (1) (4) of the Town Property Evaluation Act, Chapter 65, Laws of Belize, Revised Edition 2011.

(1) Any person who becomes the owner of any property on or after the date on which this Act comes into force in respect of any town in which such property is situated shall, within thirty days after becoming such owner, give notice thereof in writing to the local authority of that town.

(4) Any person who refuses or willfully neglects to give notice in accordance with subsection (1) of this section is liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding fifty dollars.

For queries about your property tax, please contact our Revenue Department at 480-2072 or via email at [email protected]
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News
Yesterday at 06:41 PM
Belize Vaccine Champ

The Belize Tourism Board (BTB) has launched a “COVID-19 Vaccination” raffle to encourage Belizeans to get vaccinated. Any Belizean who gets their 1st vaccination dose between June 10 and August 31, 2021 will have a chance to enter BTB’s Vaccination Raffle. Post a pic of yourself on Facebook with your Covid-19 vaccination card using #BelizeVaccineChamp in your post to enter the raffle. It’s that easy! Drawing date is now September 1, 2021. *Does not apply to Frontline COVID workers (tourism workers, health care workers, police, BDF) who are eligible to participate in a separate raffle.

(*Employees of the Belize Tourism Board and Ministry of Tourism and Diaspora Relations and their immediate families are not qualified to participate.)

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Frontline Hero Belize

The Belize Tourism Board (BTB) has launched a “COVID-19 Vaccination” raffle to encourage Belizeans to get vaccinated. Any Frontline COVID worker who gets their 1st vaccination dose between June 9 and August 31, 2021 will have a chance to enter *BTB’s Vaccination Raffle. Post a pic of yourself on Facebook with your Covid-19 vaccination card using #frontlineherobz in your post to enter the raffle. It’s that easy! Drawing date is September 1, 2021.

(*Employees of the Belize Tourism Board and Ministry of Tourism and Diaspora Relations and their immediate families are not qualified to participate.)

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Travel
Yesterday at 06:32 PM

Canada To End 14-day Quarantine for Vaccinated Citizens and Permanent Residents by July

The Canadian government eyes ending the current two-week quarantine requirement for fully vaccinated travelers returning home, federal officials announced Wednesday. Health Minister Patty Hajdu said citizens, permanent residents, and essential workers with two doses of the COVID-19 vaccine can soon cross the border without staying at a government-authorized quarantine hotel stay—once they test negative.

“We’re aiming for early July. The general ballpark is the first week in July,” Haijdu said.

Travelers will still need a negative pre-departure PCR test and another test on arrival. They would quarantine at home until that test comes back negative. After that, they’d be free to go. The changes are part of a multi-step plan to reopen the country’s borders as more Canadians become vaccinated against COVID-19. Canada could move into the first stage of the plan as early as July if the vaccination rollout continues going well.

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Nation
Yesterday at 06:27 PM
Effective June 14, 2021, the opening hours for the Vital Statistics Unit will be as follows:

Monday to Thursday 5:00 am to 4:00 pm
Friday 8:00 am to 3:30 pm


In light of these new opening hours, please take note of the following: Applications are done from 8:00 am — 12:00 pm
Express and Next Day Applications are done from 8:00 am —11:00 am

In addition, please take note of the following:
Express and Next Day Applications are done Monday to Thursday only
Effective June 21, the Corrections room will be opened on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays only to accommodate:

- Late Registrations
- Corrections of Errors of Facts
- Deed Poll Applications

Each individual must present their original receipt in order to collect documents. Receipts can be submitted up to midday on any given day.
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Corozal
Yesterday at 05:47 PM
Yesterday in a historic demonstration of partnership, Mayor Rigo Vellos signed a Memorandum of Understanding (Unity) with the Corozal Football Association and the Corozal Sports Council, concretizing the Corozal Town Council’s commitment to supporting the development of sports in Corozal.

The signing of the MOU took place at the Andres Campos Civic Center and had the participation of executive officials of the Football Federation of Belize, executives of the Corozal Football Association, and members of the Corozal Sports Council.

One of the first results of the unity approach is the start of the Corozal Football Academy later this month which will see the roll-out of a programme that will teach children aged 5-10 fundamental football principles and techniques. The Academy initiative will be spearheaded as a pilot project by the Football Association and coordinated with the support of CTC and CSC over a period of 12-weeks.

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Culture
Yesterday at 11:09 AM
Austin Rodriguez Drum Shop is located on Y-Not Island in Dangriga where three generations of drum makers have safeguarded the tradition of making Garifuna drums for over 45 years. Drums are an integral part of the Garifuna culture, used in Garifuna Traditional and Punta Music, Paranda and Dance. They are essential in the completion of rites of passage such as the “Nine Nights” and ancestral ceremonies such as the “Dugu'.

Mr. Austin Rodriguez is renowned for innovating the method of making drums. His technique employs using a chainsaw to make several drums from one log; this means the Rodriguez Family sustainably utilizes majority of the hardwoods they harvest from the Belizean rainforest.

In 2020 the Rodriguez family was double hit by tragedy. First, the Covid-19 Pandemic slowed visitation and revenue to the drum shop. Second, torrential rain and severe thunder storms damaged the roof of their drum making shed, subsequently causing the closure of their business. Since that time the family has been seeking avenues to rebuild the shed so that they can continue doing what they are passionate about- providing a space where everyone- musicians, students, tourist and visitors- can make their own drum.

Thank You to Southern Belize Media for allowing us to share this video of Ms. Daytha Rodriguez, daughter and accomplished female drum maker, talks about the important role of ensuring that Garifuna drums- craft and instrument endures for generations to come!

We can all help by assisting, volunteering and donating- time, energy and resources to this noble cause. Contact Ms. Daytha Rodriguez via WhatsApp at 602-8593 or by email at: [email protected]

If anyone would like to assist "Austin Rodriguez Drum Making", in the construction of the shed you can contact, Ms. Daytha Rodriguez at phone # 602-8593, or through email at
[email protected]

Photos Courtesy:- Juanita Joseph and Sister, Henry Lopez and Gems Dangriga.



Discussion with Daytha Rodriguez, who is the daughter of master drum maker Austin Rodriguez. We discussed her becoming a female drum maker and the support that is needed to assist in the rebuilding of the drum making shed on Why-Not Island.

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News
Yesterday at 10:41 AM
Belize’s foreign reserves have withstood some of the worst days it has seen. Now, the Financial Secretary says the nation’s reserves are bouncing back. He noted that the process to complete recovery will be slow, yet the economy is already experiencing growth.

Joseph Waight, Financial Secretary


“Well, the official reserves are adequate. I think we have three and a half months of imports cover. We are hoping, we expect it to remain that way. We are beginning to see some resilience in the economy. It is going to be slow. But I think we are over the worst of it.”

Channel 5
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Nation
Yesterday at 10:38 AM

The International Monetary Fund has released its official report following its Article Four consultation with Belize back in February of this year. Among the policy points Belizeans would be most concerned about are the recommended cuts to government spending and increases in taxes, including the General Sales Tax.  The report acknowledges Belize has been hard hit by COVID-19. In fact, the report says Belize has had one of the highest numbers of cases and deaths per capita in the Caribbean.  In 2020, tourism fell by seventy-two percent. Belize’s Gross Domestic Product contracted by fourteen percent that year and public debt increased from ninety-seven percent in 2019 to almost one hundred and thirty percent in 2020.  Because the IMF says Belize’s recovery from the pandemic will be protracted with only sluggish tourism growth for most of 2021, and public debt likely to remain high, the fund says Belize’s economic outlook is “subject to substantial downside risks, including from a resurgence of the pandemic and natural disasters.” The Fund directors say there is an urgent need to restore debt sustainability, provide support to the most vulnerable and implement structural reforms.  The directors recommended broadening the tax base, strengthening revenue administration, and reprioritizing expenditures.  A major priority is restoring debt sustainability to reduce external imbalances and strengthen the currency peg.  They called on the authorities to limit central bank financing of the government, which together with fiscal consolidation, would help reduce the current account deficit, improve access to external financing, and boost reserves. But they also called for increasing tax rates, including that of the GST.  News Five spoke with Financial Secretary Joseph Waight about IMF’s latest report.

Joseph Waight, Financial Secretary

“The thing is this. Nobody knows for sure what the future holds. The government is putting in place what it thinks are credible and adequate goals to try to resume growth and bring our debt back to sustainable levels. We have taken difficult actions. We have reached out to our partners, including Labour and the private sector, everybody working together. But, it needs a sustained effort. And we are hoping that in eighteen months or another two years, we look back in the rear view mirror and we see that we have climbed out of this hole. The IMF is conservative by nature. And there are risks, downside risks. So, climate change we have to consider, things we don’t know. Prices on our commodities can sometimes be volatile, so there are a number of unknowns. But I think we are taking the correct steps to stabilize ourselves, put ourselves back in a sustainable path. And hopefully in three years’ time, with sustained effort, we will be able to say that we are back on solid ground you know.”

Paul Lopez

“God forbid, but we are to have a natural disaster, or a second wave in the COVID-19 pandemic, that would set those projections back substantially. Can this risk be mitigated by broadening the tax base?”

Joseph Waight

“The idea is to try to improve your administration and widen the base of course. Rather than increase the rates you widen the base. And indeed, if we have a big economic shock we would have to go back to the drawing board.”

Channel 5

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Living in Belize
Yesterday at 10:35 AM
The Belize Tourism Board (BTB) is pleased to inform tourism stakeholders that the Belize Water Services Limited (BWSL) will offer a 5% early payment rebate on bills for the months of June, July and August 2021 to approved accommodations. This collaboration between the BTB and BWSL aims to provide financial relief to accommodations within the tourism sector.

Accommodations that are not included in the list of eligible accounts either do not have active accounts OR the account is not registered under the accommodations’ name OR the account is registered under a residential account and is not a commercial account. Accommodations that would like to benefit from the initiative can contact BWSL at 222-4757 or via email at [email protected] to provide all documents and complete the steps needed for eligibility. Deadline for submission is Friday June 25, 2021.

To find out if you are eligible for the rebate please click HERE.

The BTB hereby extends its sincere thanks to BWSL for joining us in our efforts to assist the tourism industry during this challenging time and, as an extension, contribute to Belize’s economic recovery efforts.

For further information, please call the BTB at 227-2420 or via email at [email protected]
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Links
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