Friday, September 28, 2012

BELIZE DECLARES TURNEFFE ATOLL A MARINE RESERVE!

Thank you Hon. Lisel Alamilla. You are proof that it pays to invest in women! I have confidence that you will work hard to help women in Belize get better opportunities in health and education, and by doing so, this will make for a better and stronger community. You have made an impact that will benefit the world.

The Turneffe Atoll Marine Reserve was enacted on Tuesday, September 25, 2012, by the Hon. Lisel Alamilla, Belize’s Minister of Forestry, Fisheries and Sustainable Development. The act will manage and protect the largest and most biologically diverse atoll in the Caribbean, announced Craig Hayes, Board Chairman of Turneffe Atoll Trust and owner/operator of Turneffe Flats Resort.

Read more here:http://www.ambergristoday.com/content/stories/2012/september/28/belize-declares-turneffe-atoll-marine-reserve?utm_medium=twitter&utm_source=twitterfeed

Thursday, September 27, 2012

THE MICHELLE OBAMA OF BELIZE

Ms. Magazine is an award-winning US publication recognized internationally as the media expert on issues relating to women’s status, women's rights, and women's points of view.


The 40th anniversary issue of Ms. will be available on newsstand everywhere by October 2. Make sure to pick one up and learn what's at stake for women, from safe abortion and birth control to economic security and workplace equality, and all about Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security and protection against violence. And yes, it also provides a voters' guide to key ballot initiatives and a look at the numbers of women running for the US Congress.

You can buy a single copy on-line here by October 2, 2012
Just got my copy at B&N! Get yours today!

BELIZE TOURISM INCREASE FOR JULY AND AUGUST

The BTB released their report FOR JULY AND AUGUST and those months show increases. July saw a 7.2% increase in tourist arrivals, adding up to 1,736 more tourists, while August hosted 10.1% more tourists, totaling 1,793.

Cruise arrivals were down up to June of this year, according to the BTB, the third quarter of 2012 began with an increase of 9.6% seeing 35,224 cruise tourists compared to 32,132 from 2011.

BTB believes that by the end of the year, the numbers will greatly improve with the excitement of the end of the Mayan Calendar.



via capitalnewspaper:https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=306006789507581&set=a.235837823191145.52676.100002947863123&type=1&theater


Monday, September 24, 2012

STREETS PROJECT IN BELMOPAN-COROZAL-ORANGE WALK


Portion of 1st Street North in Corozal Town to be paved under the BMDP Street Project

Hon. Pablo Marin, Minister of Health, delivering the keynote address



Press Release No. 18 - 2012

Belmopan, Monday September 24, 2012:  The municipalities of Belmopan, Corozal and Orange Walk will see a further improvement of their main streets as a result of a $2.1 Million dollar street project under the Belize Municipal Development Project (BMDP) which was launched this morning during a formal ceremony in Corozal Town.

The street project calls for the enhancement of  Nim Li Punit, Hummingbird  and Raccoon Streets in the City of Belmopan; Punta Gorda and 1st Street North in Corozal Town and Santa Familia Street in Orange Walk Town.

The work scope for the project includes the realignment of street side drains, provision of street concrete curbs, resurfacing of the streets with Hot Mix and or chip seal, provision of street markings for vehicular and pedestrian lanes and permanent sinage.  This project will cost approximately Bz $2,183,809.65 and will be carried out by A&N Construction , a local firm.
From left City Councillor Anna Guy, SIF's Daniel Cano, Hon. Pablo Marin, Mr Hilberto Campos, Mayor of Corozal and Mr Kevin Bernard, Mayor of Orange Walk, cutting the symbolic ribbon
Hon. Pablo Marin congratulates Mr Kevin Bernard, Mayor of Orange Walk Town, at the launching of the BMDP Street Project


These street projects will satisfy a number of important objectives including putting in place proper traffic safety measures that can be monitored and enforced by the respective municipal traffic departments; addressing health issues that normally affects street users during the dry and rainy seasons; and improving the general aesthetics and attractiveness of the areas in the participating municipalities.  

The BMDP is a $30 million dollar Government project, which aims to provide much needed infrastructure in seven major municipalities in the country.  It is being implemented by the Project Implementation Unit of the BMDP, under the umbrella of the Social Investment Fund, and aims to improve access to basic municipal infrastructure and to enhance municipal management in selected Town and City Councils of Belize.  These include Belmopan, Benque Viejo Del Carmen, San Ignacio and Santa Elena, Dangriga, Punta Gorda, Corozal and Orange Walk.

The project is focusing on three main categories namely: Municipal Infrastructure Investments, Technical Assistance and Capacity Building for Town and City Councils and Central Government, and Project Management and Administration.

The keynote address at the official ceremony was delivered by Hon. Pablo Marin, Minister of Health and Area Representative for Corozal Bay.  Other speakers included Mr Kevin Bernard, Mayor of Orange Walk Town,  Mr Hilberto Campos, Mayor of Corozal Town, Councillor Anna Guy, representing the Belmopan City Council and Mr Daniel Cano, Executive Director of the Social Investment Fund, among others.
Members of the public at the launching of the CZL,OW and Bmp Street Project


For further information please contact Mr Mike Hernandez Jr. (Sr. J.P.), Director of Public Relations of the Social Investment Fund, at Tel No. 822-0239/0508 or via email at mike.hernandez@sifbelize.org or Cell No. 634-4002.

END

Friday, September 21, 2012

INTERNATIONAL PEACE DAY-2012

I took this picture above at the Peace Memorial Museum in Hiroshima in August 2012.

 At 8:15 on the morning of August 6, 1945, the world's first atomic bomb was dropped on Hiroshima. In an instant most of the city was in ruins; hundreds of thousands of precious lives were lost. After the bomb, people were mobilized among the ruins to demolish buildings and remove debris for fire-lanes. Many bodies were never found and returned to love ones.

Today, September 21 is "Peace Day"; a day designated by the UN to advocate for peace around the world. 

And yet humanity remains threatened by tens of thousands of nuclear weapons.

Estimates of deployed warheads from what I can gather are as follows:
US-2150; Russia-2427; UK-225; France-300; China-240; India-100-240;
Pakistan-90-110; Israel-80; North Korea-unknown.

The missiles on this globe are enough to kill all of humanity many times; why do we need more? As of December 2010, North Korea’s plutonium stockpile was estimated to be 24-42 kg which would be sufficient to build up to eight nuclear weapons.

And let’s not forget Iran. Today, Iran's president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, speaking during a military parade in Tehran, threatened the complete destruction of the State of Israel as the country unveiled a domestically manufactured air defense system as part of a military parade, various Iranian news agencies reported.

“I am confident that Zionists are on the way out and the world will be freed from their existence and justice will be established,” Ahmadinejad was quoted by the Iranian state news agency Fars as saying. “Although Zionists will fail to achieve their goals, all nations should remain vigilant against their plots.”

My only hope is that the international community will take action against Iran. Just last week Iran has admitted to lying to UN inspectors and Western countries about aspects of its nuclear program to confuse those trying to figure out what the Islamic Republic is really doing.

On Monday, Sept 17th, IAEA chief Yukiya Amano met Abbasi-Davani. After the meeting, Amano said it was essential for Iran to cooperate with his inspectors to clarify concerns about military dimensions to its nuclear program. Iran has repeatedly refused to allow IAEA inspectors to visit key sites.

In related development, the U.S. House of Representatives has unanimously passed a bill to counter Iran’s growing presence and influence in LatinAmerica. The bill, sponsored by South Carolina Rep. Jeff Duncan, was passed amid reports that Iran has established a Hezbollah terrorist training base in northern Nicaragua and that three suspected Hezbollah terrorists were arrested in Merida, Mexico last week and all three were holding passports from Belize.

The world cannot afford to stockpile anymore nuclear weapons, and in light of all the violence across the Muslim world, Iran must be stopped if we truly want peace. There is no better time than now to fight for human rights, protect free speech, and promote religious tolerance and respect.

Take action by learning more here.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, BELIZE!


Dear Belize:

On the 31st anniversary of your independence, September 21, 1981, I wish to extend my warmest regards and congratulations. 

This is a day when Belizeans from all walks of life come together to celebrate unity. I’m honored and blessed to have been born in a great country, although, like many countries, we certainly have our flaws. And while we will be celebrating, let's not forget the more than 100 people who have died this year from crime and violence. Let's find a way to end the violence, Belize and improve our economic conditions.

I also wish to extend my sincere good wishes to the prime minister, the Hon. Dean Barrow, on this special day; continued prosperity and most of all a peaceful future and a new tomorrow. 

Belizeans at home and abroad, I know you will celebrate with pride!


Sincerely,
Linda Crawford

Thursday, September 20, 2012

TEAM BELIZE: VISIT TO SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA


            
The Belize National Cricket Team “TEAM BELIZE” made a historic visit to Southern California over the Labor Day weekend from August 30 to September 5, 2012 as guest of the Southern California Cricket Association (S.C.C.A.) and the California-Belize Cricket Club (Cal-Bel). Team Belize played three consecutive cricket matches in as many days, winning all three games. The first match was played on September 1st against a local West Indies X1, the second against Cal-Bel on September 2nd and the final match was against an S.C.C.A. X1 on Monday, September 3rd, 2012.  The entire team had arrived in Los Angeles by August 30, except for its opening bowler, Rodwell Conorquie, who landed at LAX the following night.
           

Team Belize Players were met at the Los Angeles International Airport by a welcoming party made up of relatives and friends, including members of the Cal-Bel Cricket Club headed by its president, the Rev. Tony Jones, who saw to it that they were all taken care of throughout their stay, with the help of Belizeans who had volunteered in advance to care for them during their visit. The team arrival in California went smoothly after months of careful planning by the Cal-Bel organizers who were asked by the S.C.C.A. President, Dr. Kamal Azeez, to take the lead in planning the tour. This was the first time that a Belize National Cricket Team was invited to play in Southern California, and most of the players were visiting here for the first time and needed all the support they could get. Cal-Bel scheduled a welcoming BBQ to raise funds for Team Belize on Friday, August 31, that was cancelled due to a mix up in the arrival date of the team, but when the bulk of the players arrived on time as originally scheduled, Cal-Bel hastily substituted a welcoming meet and greet event for the team, with Bobby B. Sutherland as DJ. These youthful and well-disciplined players fit right in and felt right at home among us, and were well respectful of their able team captain who had been with them since 2006, Dirk Sutherland, and their low profiled manager, Llewellyn Sutherland, who lead the tour. Most of Cal-Bel players were in Belize last year Easter and played against most of these guys, as well as against the best cricketers in Belize who have never played on the National Team.
           
The Belize National Cricket Team that toured California was not of full strength since a number of the best players that represented Belize abroad on the national side could not make it to California because of financial constraints and other personal reasons, and had to be substituted by young untested players who were playing on the team for the first time. These included such youths as seventeen year old Kenroy Reynolds, who has been representing Belize internationally at the under-nineteen youth tournament sponsored by the I.C.C. This young man is highly disciplined and was very impressive in his overall performance on the tour.

Team Belize played a fairly good first game on Saturday, September 1, 2012, defeating a selected side from several Caribbean countries, including Belize. The game started way later that expected at 2:45pm, with each side bowling 30 six ball overs. Team Belize batted first and scored 192 runs for 9 wickets, with the player of the game, Kenroy Roca, top scoring with 56 runs. Kenroy Roca also did an excellent job bowling. Rodwell Conerquie played exceptionally well, batting 32 runs not out. Rodwell was undoubtedly the STAR Bowler of the match, seconded closely by Kene Broaster, Kenroy Roca and the seventeen year old youth, Kenroy Reynolds. There were some exceptional catches made by more than one player from Team Belize, most prominently by Kene Broaster and another player in the outfield, who chased down a ball and managed to catch it in his lap while on the ground in a sitting position. Rodwell opened bowl for Team Belize and in the first 3 balls, got the Caribbean side open bats to offer and easy catch that was dropped. He got him to offer again in the second over and retired him. He got a second batsman to offer in the first over and therefore got two good wickets in two over for just about nil. All the other bowlers were pretty good and the field was tight. Team Belize retired six batsmen in the allotted 30 overs. The captain, Dirk Sutherland, and Mr. Roca, both got ran out.
           
Sunday, September 2nd was set aside for the two teams of Belizeans to play a match against each other in honor of Hazzart Anthony, a popular Cal-Bel player who won our bowling trophies for taking the most wickets and for bowling average in the 2011 cricket season, who suddenly passed away in mid-May this year. Team Belize won the trophy by defeating the Cal-Bel Cricket Club 218 to 171 runs. Kene Broaster won the player of the game trophy by scoring 95 runs and did an outstanding performance bowling and fielding. Kene's older brother, Jason, who captained the game on the Cal-Bel side, top scored for Cal-Bel with 39 runs. Rodwell Conorquie opened bowled for Team Belize and managed to get one wicket for 22 runs in his allotted 5 overs, after two early catches were dropped by his team mates in the slip. Cal-Bel's Captain, Jason Broaster, took 3 wickets for 8 runs in 5 overs, and Clarence McKay took 2 wickets for about 10 runs in 2 overs.
           
The game was well attended by people from Belize and other Caribbean countries, who had the pleasure of listening to Donkeyman from Belize DJing in a fun and lively manner. The Belize Consul General and members of his staff attended the game, as well as several dignitaries from the Caribbean Community in California and from California itself.
           
In anticipation for an all out match against the S.C.C.A. X1 on Monday, September 3, 2012, Team Belize substituted Bobby B. Sutherland and Jason Broaster, two of Belize’s best players in the California league to strengthen up its team. They defeated the S.C.C.A. X1 quite easily in a 20 overs match, with the S.C.C.A. X1 scoring only 135 runs after batting out their allotted 20 overs, while Team Belize lost only two wickets before passing the score with 139 runs in 12 overs.  Kene Broaster again top scored for Team Belize with 71 runs not out, and thus winning the series M.V.P. Award. Bobby B. Sutherland had just joined Kene and together they quickly passed the S.C.C.A. X1 score, leaving Jason Broaster all padded up and ready to bat. The Belize Team that came to California was just about half strength since four of Team Belize top players, including its number one batsman, Warren Anthony, and his hard hitting brother, Mikhail, could not make the trip. Cricketers from the Belize and Caribbean community in California have expressed their disappointment with the low level S.C.C.A. X1 selection, which included four teenage players from the Youth Team, when everyone were anticipating a much more competitive 30 overs match that would have really tested the Team Belize players. The top level players in the California League were competing in a S.C.C.A. sponsored T-20 Tournament for a winning purse of US $5,000.00. Their games were being played on the same grounds at Woodley Park and lasted into the mid-afternoon, which caused all the Team Belize games to start much later than scheduled. At the end of each game, an award was given to the most outstanding player of the match.
           
An Official welcoming ceremony for Team Belize was held at Woodley Park, prior to game one, on Saturday, September 1, 2012 where the players were warmly welcomed by the S.C.C.A. President, California, Judge Niles, Retired Los Angeles City Councilor, Robert Farrell, and the Belize Consul General of California, the Hon. Roland Yorke.

Individual gift bags, including a red cap, were given to all the players by the President of the Association, Dr. Kamal Azeez, who was very instrumental in getting the Belize National Team to play in California. At the end of each game, awards were given out to the most outstanding player of the match, one of which was won by Kenroy Roca and two by Kene Broaster, the winner of the M.V.P. trophy for the series. Team Belize was also awarded by the Belize Consul General at the Cal-Bel sponsored Welcoming Banquet held on the night of Saturday, September I, 2012. Boozy and the New Dimensions Band, supported by D.J. Easy, provided the music for the banquet, which by all accounts was a huge success. DJ Easy, Jason Broaster and Cecil Reynalds and his
brother, Donkeyman, all provided the music at Woodley Park on separate days, entertaining the massive crowds of people, including Belizeans coming all the way from Chicago, Arizona and other states for the games. Boozy and the New Dimensions Band, joined by King Rancho, had the crowd rocking at the park all day on Labor Day, and the band was the topic of conversation by the Caribbean Community who couldn’t get enough of them. Even the traditional Belizean Tenth of September March was in full swing at the park, with Belizeans proudly waving their National
Flags in celebration.
           
By all accounts, the visit of Team Belize to Southern California was a huge success. Even the S.C.C.A. President boasted that California Cricket Community had not seen such a large and peaceful turn out at Woodley Park since 2006 and has extended an invitation to Team Belize to come back and play again in September, 2013. Team Belize made such a positive impression in California by their general attitude and sportsmanship that the president even called on the team captain, Dirk Sutherland, to sing for the crowd. Dirk reluctantly accepted and hit up a couple Bob Marley songs.

Monday, September 17, 2012

ROSH HASHANA 2012: SHANA TOVA


Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year, is celebrated in 2012 from sundown on Sept. 16 to nightfall on Sept. 18. The Hebrew date for Rosh Hashanah is 1 Tishrei 5773.
Though Rosh Hashanah literally means "head of the year," the holiday actually takes place on the first two days of the Hebrew month of Tishrei, which is the seventh month on the Hebrew calendar. This is because Rosh Hashanah, one of four new years in the Jewish year, is considered the new year of people, animals and legal contracts. In the Jewish oral tradition, Rosh Hashanah marks the completion of the creation of the world.
Rosh Hashanah is the beginning of the Jewish High Holy Days, or Yamim Noraim(the "Days of Awe"), and is followed 10 days later by Yom Kippur, the "day of atonement." The Mishnah refers to Rosh Hashanah as the "day of judgment," and it is believed that God opens the Book of Life on this day and begins to decide who shall live and who shall die. The days between Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur are viewed as an opportunity for Jews to repent (teshuvah, in Hebrew) and ensure a good fate.
Jews traditionally gather in synagogues on Rosh Hashanah for extended services that follow the liturgy of a special prayerbook, called a mahzor, that is used during the Days of Awe. At specific times throughout the service, a shofar, or ram's horn, is blown. The mitzvah (commandment) to hear the shofar, a literal and spiritual wake-up call, is special to this time of year.
The new year is the only Jewish holiday that is observed for two days by all Jews (other holidays are observed for just one day within the Land of Israel) as it is also the only major holiday that falls on a new moon.
A common greeting on Rosh Hashanah is shana tovah u'metukah, Hebrew for "a good and sweet new year." Many traditional Rosh Hashanah foods -- apples and honey, raisin challah, honey cake and pomegranate -- are eaten, in part, for this reason.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

THE PRE-ROSH HASHANAH APOLOGY: THINK FIRST!


"Nothing can bring you peace but yourself." --Ralph Waldo Emerson
An apology seldom puts the kibosh on unsettling feelings, whether they stem from anxiety, guilt or anger. Often we look for absolution when we apologize so we can "move on" and feel positively about ourselves once again. During this time of the Jewish month, we are considering and reflecting on how we may have hurt others. However, before we utter an apology, we have to consider whether we genuinely wish to bring peace to the other person (who we feel we may have wronged) through our words or bring peace of mind to ourselves.
Realistically, an outside source can't wipe the slate clean for you. As a Jew, I happen to love the concept of the Catholic confession in confessional booth, and I really wish we had such a thing, but even a priest will tell you that it is not a total panacea. Forgiveness ultimately comes from within. It takes the ability to dismiss the past and immerse yourself in the present combined with the passage of time to shed shame. Shame is difficult to live with, especially in a case where you know you've done something highly regrettable. But don't worsen your shame by apologizing when the word "sorry" is wasted; really consider what the other side wants to hear first. Is an apology appropriate or is it being uttered for your own personal gain?
Trust your intuition when you sense that an apology is not going to cut it, when it will be scoffed at, when it will seem insincere or just not big enough to fit the crime. Then start forgiving yourself by beginning with a list of goals for your new life starting tomorrow. And when you create that list, focus on the things you can do for others. Begin with your immediate family and close friends who you may have neglected during a period of self-absorption. Rumination has gotten you nowhere except in circles like a hamster on a treadmill.
Forgive yourself. L'Shana Tova!
Shira Hirschman Weiss (@ShiraWeiss

Saturday, September 1, 2012

BOOK NOOK: ALL ABOUT BOOKS

Book Review for Book Nook: By Jaleesa Leslie

Dork Diaries: Tales From a Not So Popular Party Girl
Written by Rachel Renee Russell

This is my niece, Jaleesa Leslie and when not on the tennis court playing in a match or training, she enjoys reading. Reading has been one of her favorite past times for as long as I can remember. She is currently reading the “Dork Diaries” series. Here is what she has to say about “Tales From A Not So Popular Party Girl.”

“This book is about a girl Nikki and her friends in their teens. One of them, Brandon has a crush on Nikki. Brandon and he asked her to go to the dance with him, but Mackenkie, who is not Nikki’s friend cancelled the dance. She did that because she wants to dance with Brandon, Nikki’s crush. Mackenkie is the president of the student body and she has the power to stop the dance. Nikki and the rest of her friends will try to stop Mackenzie from cancelling the dance".

I like this book because it is full of mystery and it is also funny. The book is exciting, too! I like this book and all of them in the series. It is easy to read and I read them at school when I finish all my work.

I would like to recommend this book and all in the series ‘Dork Diaries’ to all teens, especially girls, who love to read. 
Jaleesa with Coach Rick Macci
Coach Martin Blackman and Jaleesa
Jaleesa Leslie is a normal 10 year old who started playing tennis at the age of 4 and began competing at the age of 7.  Right away we know Jaleesa was going to be a good tennis player.  By the time she was 8 she was dominating the Grand Prix tournament; she then excelled at the 10 and under US Tennis Association (USTA) tournaments. 

At age 9 she was ranked in the top 5 in the 10 and under bracket in the state of Florida and was competing with 12 year-olds. Jaleesa was invited to a USTA 12 and under Spring Tennis Camp in Daytona Beach this year. She was hand picked because of the way she plays and the impression she makes on everyone that sees her play.  She did so well at that camp that the USTA gave her another offer of free training with two of Florida's best tennis coaches, Rick Macci and Martin Blackman. Jaleesa and her parents Garreth and Maggie Leslie felt that meeting with these coaches was a privilege and she enjoyed her meet and learned a lot from both of them, especially coach Macci as she knew him to be the coach that trained their favorite pro stars Serena and Venus Williams and also Maria Sharapova.


Coach Macci and Jaleesa 
Two weeks ago, Jaleesa went to Boca Raton, Florida for a three week tennis training camp courtesy of the USTA.  When she is not on the court she will be reading one of her favorites from the "Dork Diaries". 

For Jaleesa, reading and playing tennis will keep her focused on reaching her goal, which she is not ashamed of revealing: "COLLEGE". That's what she has her eyes set on and her parents will make sure they help her along the way and give her all the support and love she needs.

Jaleesa is a student at Wolf Lake Elementary School in Apopka, Florida. She is in 5th Grade and is an honor roll student. 

Jaleesa is the grand-daughter of Laura Crawford of Crooked Tree Village, Belize and Mrs. Elsie Gentle of Belize City.

BELIZE NATIONAL CRICKET TEAM IN LOS ANGELES

Rodwell Conorquie and Raynord Tillett of Crooked Tree Village will be playing with the TeamBelize
Part of the "TeamBelize Cricket Club" Leaving Belize International Airport

Welcome to California "TEAM BELIZE".

As a result of an invitation from the Southern California Cricket Association and CALBEL Cricket Club, the Belize National Cricket Team will tour Los Angeles, California, from August 30, 2012 to September 5, 2012. Team Belize consists of 14 players who were all born in Belize and have been playing cricket since their childhood. While in Los Angeles, the team will play three matches against CALBEL and an all star selection.

Team Belize has played numerous international matches in Argentina, Chile, Costa Rica, Suriname, El Salvador and Mexico and has won the Championship of Central America in 2006 and the Division Two Championship of the Americas in 2011. The team is an affiliate member of the International Cricket Council (ICC), which is the world’s governing body for cricket.
Some senior members of Team Belize are unable to be on the tour and therefore, the Association has decided to replace them with a few young, untested cricketers. The Association is of the view that Team Belize is still a force to be reckoned with.

Team Belize will be captained by Dirk Sutherland, who has captained the team since 2006. 

By: Winfield Tillett