Saturday, October 31, 2009

SCHOOL BELLS, INC TO VISIT BELIZE

SCHOOL BELLS TEAM


Over the past two months, the country of Belize has been blessed with the generosity of some dedicated healthcare professionals from the United States who are volunteering their time to help the people of Belize. First it was the Belize Mission Project working with the people in San Pedro and Caye Caulker, and now it’s School Bells.


On November 11-21, 2009, a group of American physicians, dentists, and other health care professionals will be visiting and volunteering their time and expertise to benefit the community of Placencia, Seine Bight Village, Mango Creek and Monkey River centers.

School Bells, Inc. is a humanitarian non-profit 501(c) 3 organization. Their goal is to facilitate opportunities in under-served communities in Belize; as part of their humanitarian mission they will be providing free dental and medical care to people in these communities who cannot afford this necessary care.




For several years they have been servicing the country of Belize with medical and dental care. They have serviced the Belize, Orange Walk and Toledo Districts, with dental and eye care as well as general health screenings. Dental checkups include cleaning, filling and extraction. All medications and services provided to the communities are free.
The Medical Task Force Team is made up of volunteers from different parts of the U.S.
The group consists of Pharmacists, Pediatricians, Dermatologists, Dentists, Emergency MD, Family Doctors, Internists, OB/GYN MD, Drivers, Handlers and Registration Personnel. There will also be a demonstration of CPR for those who wish to learn.

The clinic will be fully equipped with modern dental equipment and supplies, all generously donated by health care professionals in the USA.
CHILDREN IN  BELIZE  WAITING TO MEET SCHOOL BELLS TEAM
The Rotary Club members of Placencia and other village residents have volunteered to work hand in hand with the medical team. High school students from Mango Creek, Independence High School and a nursing student from Dangriga have volunteered to help to make a difference in their community. These students will receive volunteer credit hours for their time working with the team.









The volunteers will be going back to Belize on December 5th-12th, 2009. This time they will be in the Belize District and will be servicing the villages of Crooked Tree, Maskall, Burrell Boom, Hattieville, Burmudan Landing and other surrounding villages. Last year over 1000 persons were treated in the Belize District.




THE MEDICAL TEAM DRIVING ON THE PARTIALLY SUBMERGED CROOKED TREE ROAD AND CROSSING THE FLOODED CROOKED TREE LAGOON IN DECEMBER 2008



While the medical work is taking place, the athletic director will be training the soccer coaches at Zion Park School in Maskall, St. Mark and Our Lady schools in the Toledo District on the fundamentals of coaching. The educational director will also be conducting a teacher’s and Principal’s workshop in the Toledo and Cayo Districts. This same workshop was conducted in Belize City in May, 2009.










Mrs. Yvonne Bridges, president of School Bells said that the clinic will be around for a long time and she emphasized that the group will continue their work in Belize as long as the services are needed and requested. Mrs. Bridges will be in Placencia training volunteers before the team arrives. Her hopes are to help encourage Belizeans to become volunteers in their country; to give Belizeans an opportunity to learn new skills, and to build self-esteem to become more successful in their dreams for a better tomorrow.

If you would like to help School Bells, Inc. you can volunteer, donate equipment, supplies, and help get the word out. For more information you may e-mail Mrs. Yvonne Bridges at: schoolbells@comcast.net



We applaud the incredible dedicated volunteers who care deeply for the people of Belize and encourage the community to assist this program in any way possible.


Wednesday, October 28, 2009

VIEW FROM CROOKED TREE VILLAGE





Mr. Cecil "Kaffa" Russell on the farm of Mr. Leonard & Mrs. Yvonne Wade Tillett. I am happy to see a variety of farm animals in Crooked Tree Village. This way of life is fast disappearing in Crooked Tree due to the American culture. Thank you Ms Yvonne for showing the beauty and the old ways that still exist in our culture.


Fattening the pigs for sale

Whistling Ducks

Miscovy Duck  

Mama pig taking care of her piglets

Papa pig

Guinea hens-disappearing fast in Crooked Tree Village

Locked up to stop incubation of eggs.(Sitting on eggs to hatch them)

Talking parrots-these birds have the ability to mimic your speech

Turkeys-being fattened for Christmas


Mother hen and chicks

The Guard

Belizean Rapper Shyne Barrow A Free Man-But Being Deported to Belize Today

Shyne Arriving in Buffalo, New York and wearing Tzitzit(signs and symbols of Judaism and reminders of the commandments)
Oct 28, 2009
Shyne's battle with the US Immigration have finally come to an end. Following the completion of his sentence on October 6th, Shyne was ordered deported from the U.S.A. to his country of origin Belize, Central America. Shyne's legal team is pursuing a pardon from the U.S. authorities to allow him to return to the U.S.A.


Local media outlets monitored in Belize cite a T.V, station connected to the the ruling United Democratic Party government as reporting that Shyne will board a Continental Airlines flight in Buffalo, New York Wednesday morning, change planes in Houston and leave on the 1:10 Continental flight that arrives in Belize City at 2:40 pm local time.



The T.V. station says that Shyne's lawyer Harvard Law Professor Charles Ogletree will accompany his client on the flight to Belize. Shyne will be received by his father Prime Minister Dean Barrow and his uncle Michael Finnegan Minister of Housing in the Belize Cabinet.

Belize Police will interview and process Shyne Barrow at the airport, and from there he will be a free man. 

(source)http://belizean.com/ M.A. Romero is a Belize based writer and photojournalist and Managing Director of Belize.com Ltd. The company's main web site is at www.belize.com. 

Saturday, October 24, 2009

LOVE FM CHRISTMAS FUNDRAISER IN BELIZE




Soon it will be Christmas Day, and even sooner, it will be time for Love FM’s Twelve Days of Christmas Celebration, which gets under way on Saturday December 12th, with the annual Christmas Parade.


This Christmas, Love FM is on a quest to bring Peace, Joy and Love to deserving children and families across the country.  The Love Sleigh with Santa and his little helpers, will be making it’s way across the country loaded down with toys, gifts and hampers.


Love FM invites you to be a part of the Twelve Days of Christmas Celebration by donating a toy, a gift hamper, or any other item that you feel will bring joy to a deserving family this Christmas.  Send us a toy or toys for our toy mountain, and sit back in your Living room and watch the faces of the children on Love TV as they choose a gift of their choice from the Love FM’s toy mountain, or listen to Love FM, as the children get a gift from Santa and his helpers on the Love Sleigh.


To make this one of the most successful Twelve Days, Love FM has asked two of our dear friends, Reggie (516-708-3192) and Eleanor Jex, to join us in our toy drive this Christmas.  Please feel free to send your gifts to them and they will make sure your donations arrive in Belize in time for the Christmas Celebration.

Wishing you Peace, Joy and Love this Christmas!
Carmen M Barrow
The Love Crew
RSV Ltd


PHONE in Belize: 203- 2281 or 203-0528 FAX: 203-0529
Email: twelvedaysofchristmas_2009@hotmail.com
Phone in New York: 516-708-3192



Friday, October 23, 2009

ETHIOPIA FACES ANOTHER FAMINE TWENTY FIVE YEARS AFTER THE GREAT 1984 FAMINE

Twenty five years ago the world watched as Ethiopia suffered the greatest catastrophe ever, famine. This week marks the anniversary of the Great Famine, which claimed the lives of more than a million people in Ethiopia and present-day Eritrea. The famine, which was caused by severe drought, devastated the northern provinces of Ethiopia which includes Tigre, and Wollo.
Twenty-five years later, Ethiopia is facing yet another famine. 


This time, the crisis is in the Horn of Africa which includes the South and East of Ethiopia,
Northern Kenya, Somalia and Uganda. The drought is especially severe in Ethiopia where 80% of its 85 million people live off the land and are dependent on rain for its agriculture. The area has been hard hit by a two-year recurrent lack of rain.



Twenty-five years ago, Michael Buerk's dramatic BBC footage from Korem, in northern Ethiopia, brought a devastating famine to the world's attention. Tens of thousands of people had sought refuge from war and drought in the town. 


The aid agency, Oxfam said that as many as 6.2 million Ethiopians need emergency humanitarian assistance due to severe drought. Other aid agencies put the figures much higher.
On Thursday, October 22, 2009, the Ethiopian government made an emergency appeal for $121 million in food aid for 4.9 million people. Despite the government's claim of double-digit economic growth, Ethiopia remains one of the poorest countries in the World, and unable to feed its people. For much of the world, Ethiopia has become a byword with famine to this day.

On October 22, 2009 the Ethiopian famine was a lead story on BBC World News. 

 

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

KING LALIBELLA


CARVINGS OF KING LALIBELLA INSIDE BEIT GOLGOTHA WHERE WOMEN ARE NOT ALLOWED TO ENTER
Lalibella was the capital of the ancient Zagwa Dynasty, which ruled the Christian Kingdom of
Ethiopia from the 10th to the mid 13th centuries.  King Lalibella was the strongest and most famous of the kings of the Zagwa Dynasty who ruled the kingdom of Ethiopia between the first quarter of the thirteenth and the last quarter of the fourteenth centuries from their formidable native mountain fortresses of Waas and Lasta long after Axum had stopped being the political center of Ethiopia.
PAINTINGS OF THE KING LALIBELLA
THE WIFE OF THE KING:QUEEN LALIBELLA









King Lalibella Semitic baptismal name was Gabra Masqual “Slave of the Cross”. According to local legend, Lalibella was born the brother of the incumbent king. As a young boy, he was covered by a swarm of bees, which his mother took as a sign that he would one day be king.  The king was not too pleased at this prophecy, and tried to poison his younger brother, but instead of killing him, he cast him into a deep sleep that endured for three days. While sleeping, Lalibella was transported to heaven by an angel that showed him a city of rock-hewn churches, which he ordered Lalibella to replicate.  When the older brother saw that Lalibella was not dead, he said he had a vision in which Christ told him to abdicate in favor of his younger brother, Lalibella.
BEIT GIYORGIS
THE STICK TO THE RIGHT IS SAID TO BE THE ACTUAL LEANING STICK OF KING LALIBELLA. THE STICK IS USED FOR SUPPORT DURING PRAYER.
LEANING STICKS FOR CHURCH PRIESTS AND DEACONS
CHURCH INTERIOR

As soon as Lalibella was crowned, he set about gathering the greatest craftmen and artisans to carve the churches. Legend has it that one of the churches was built in a day with the help of angels. Today archaeologists estimate that up to 40,000 people would have been required to carve the churches.


King Lalibella was on the throne between the years 1205 to 1225. His fame was so great that the old power center of the dynasty was later renamed after him, “Lalibala”, where we now have eleven of the most beautiful rock-hewn churches in Ethiopia that are attributed to his reign.

King Lalibella was the champion of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church and is one of the most highly respected and canonized monarchs of Ethiopia
Neomi inside one of the churches


Saturday, October 17, 2009

LALIBELLA: A LIVING SHRINE




Lalibela is a town in the wild rugged mountains some 2630 meters above sea level in Northern Ethiopia. Wonder is piled upon wonder in Ethiopia, but nothing prepared me for the rock-hewn churches in this town.  Here, 800 years ago, King Lalibela decreed that 11 churches be carved out of the bare rock landscape. Some of the churches are 10 meters high and all have been carved by thousands of hands completely underground or out of the walls of caves, surrounded by trenches and walled courtyard. They are connected to each other by a maze of dark tunnels and passageways. Each church is different and unique in size and shape; carved and decorated with symbols from the bible. The churches of Lalibella are like a village within a village. Today archaeologists are divided on how this astonishing feat was achieved.


At the crack of dawn, our guide Solomon took us from the hotel where we observed white robed priests emerging from cracks between the rocks, with bible and leaning sticks, heading to the chanting rooms of the churches. A priest at Beit Georges Church told me that the churches were carved by angels. Who am I to disbelieve him?

WITH OFFICIAL GUIDE AND FRIENDS NICOLA AND NEOMI
CHANTING ROOM

CHURCH PRIEST
Next to him, in small crevices that had been carved out of the rock wall, lay the bones of some
of his deceased predecessors. Lalibela churches are not crumbling monuments of a lost civilization, but an 800 year old active Christian community and shrine; the living soul of the Christian Orthodox tradition in Ethiopia, the second-oldest Christian country on earth. On religious feast days, such as timkat - Ethiopia's equivalent of the Epiphany - thousands of pilgrims descend on Lalibela and the priests’ parade the church's sacred tabots, replicas of the Ark of the Covenant, which are shrouded from mortal view by heavily brocaded cloth.



Lalibela is as magnificent as Petra in Jordan; the mountain setting is as wild and remote as Machu Picchu in Peru, and as important, if not more, than the Pyramids in Egypt.






All these together make Lalibela a Unesco World Heritage Site. But for the lucky few who have walked along the deep, chisel-cut ravines that link the churches and gazed upon the carvings of saints, kings and the Holy Trinity that decorate the church's walls, Lalibela is the unofficial eighth wonder of the world.



The chanting, drum beats and swaying of the priests and deacons is a scene to behold! I feel as if though I was witnessing a scene from 800 years ago. The churches are living and breathing monument with scenes from centuries ago acted out every morning.
MEN AND WOMEN HAVE SEPARATE ENTRANCES TO THE CHURCH
SITTING OUTSIDE CHURCH GOLGOTHA; WOMEN ARE NOT ALLOWED INSIDE
This is the entrance to Church Golgotha, women are not permitted to enter.
In three words! Lalibella is awesome! No traveler to
Ethiopia should miss this glorious setting high in the mountains of Northern EthiopiaTo see more pictures of Lalibella, please click on the photo stream in the right sidebar.