Recently, the residents of Ambergris Caye were privileged to witness some Island Miracles, as a result of the efforts of local business owner Lara Goldman, 12 Belize – best one-stop gift shopping on the island. Lara is a volunteer with a local organization which is dedicated to helping children with emotional, behavioral, and learning disabilities. After attending camp sessions she realized that many of these kids and a few community adults would benefit from therapy. So she wrote her Alma mater to see who was available and willing to travel to Belize and help.
She found three great girls to come make some miracles: Dr. Brooke Riley, PT, Dr. Bethany Wolf, PT. Kaley Marston, Speech Therapist. Lara Brooke and Bethany went to Arcadia University in Glenside, PA. and Kaley went to the University of Tennessee.
Miracles in the Making
In the interest of personal privacy was agreed not to name names but, the miraculous results are what is most important. A Handyman was able to experience relief from pain for the first time since his back went bad. Another man learned to dance and play tennis again. A five-year-old boy walked for the first time. A 16-month -old boy also learned to walk for the first time. Someone else learned to better maneuver in his wheelchair so he can independently go to the store for himself now – how cool is that? The gift of freedom and independence is something many of us take for granted, I think about it often when I see Dallas in his wheelchair.
Lara cried tears of joy every day and said repeatedly that week “I know it’s science and medicine, and hard work and effort….but it sure feels like I just watched a miracle”.
The official reports are not back yet, but it is estimated roughly 25 adults and children were helped over the course of the week.
As a follow up to further continue this amazing work, Lara is going to meet with several of the University’s Deans on November 11 to discuss further development of the program.
If you would like to make a voluntary contribution donation or get more information Lara’s therapy work please make contact with her at – lara@romantictravelbelize(dot)com
Interested in more great Volunteer work being done on Ambergris Caye? Read U.S. dental team marks 23rd year putting smiles on the faces of Belizeans on Robert Hawkins Bound For Belize blog.
Some video footage was taken by Lara of the amazing events. To see more go to Lara Goldman YouTube page.
In this first one look at the smile on his face at the end of the video.
More than one child was taught to walk that week by the therapists – amazing.
Great Turn Out as Always
I know many of you love animals as much (or more) than people and Saga always does a great job of helping our island animals. I was not able to make their annual Halloween party this year but a secret elf brought a few pictures. Thanks to Saga volunteers Heather, Eileen and Dawn for prize list and answering a few questions on the event.
This year, Saga made a little over $4000 – almost the entire Ambergris business and grocery community helped out with donations of food and prizes.
There were so many creative costumes that judges, former Miss San Pedro Michele Nunez, Mary Gonzalez from San Pedro Sun and Kristian & Ethan Guerrero had a tough job. The Pedigree Princess, the Two-headed Zombie Dog, the Bartender & the Martini Dog, and the Fisher Woman & Little Nemo were just a few of the amazing costumes represented.
Samantha Cobb won judges choice with dog Maya and her daughter Charlie as Little Red Riding Hood and the Granny Wolf. For most creative, it was the 2 chihuahuas one as a Chef and one as Saga Cook-off lobster in a pot, from Kathy Bayos. Look-alike was Rob Hoffman in pigtails for ears to look like his dog, Bear. Most Creative and it went to the Sargasso Dog, Dooley Bear owned by Lisa and Ronnie Cyrier.
As always Saga is thankful for all the local businesses who step up and donate prizes for the annual party and their monthly cook-offs. Saga also has an online auction that will debut Sunday in their November newsletter and run until Dec 15th. The auction will have full vacation packages, just in time for their international supporters to plan their winter escape and return to our beautiful Island. Contact them Saga Humane Society website to find out more. I know there were some very happy party goers with this long list of prizes that got won:
“12” Gift Shop – Gift Basket, A&R – $25 Gift Certificate, Amigo’s Del Mar – Blue Hole Snorkeling for Two – $780 value, Aquarius Styling Salon – Haircut/Blow-dry $25 value, Ashley’s Boutique – Doggy Sweater (boy), Belizean Arts – Paintings x Two – $950 value, Belize Chocolate Company – Certificate for $50 Gift Basket, Bella Italia Restaurant – One Large Pizza – $40 value, BIGSUP – One Hour Paddle Boarding – $30 value, Blue Water Grill – $100 Gift Certificate, CG Esthetics – $50 Worth of Services,& Caliente Restaurant – $50 Gift Certificate, Candle Garden – Dog Leash w/LED Lights, Captain Sharks – One Fishing Rod with Reel + 3 T-shirts, Caramba Restaurant – $100 Gift Certificate, Caroline’s Cooking – Lunch for Two – value $50, Castillo’s Hardware – $100 Gift Certificate, Caye Coffee – 3 – $25 Gift Certificates, Casa Picasso Restaurant – $150 Gift Certificate, Chuck & Robbie’s Dive Shop – Snorkel Trip for Two – Hol Chan/Shark Ray Alley, Coffee Bar – $20 Gift Certificate, Coral Beach Realty – Sunday Brunch trip to Caye Caulker for Six (boat, gas, coolers & ice only), Crazy Canucks – $25 Gift Certificate & 3 free entries to the hermit crab races, Di V’u Restaurant – Dinner for Two – value $100, Ecologic Divers – Hol Chan Snorkel Trip for Two – Hol Chan, Ecologic Divers – Catamaran Trip, Elvi’s Restaurant – Mayan Buffet for Two, Estel’s Dine by the Sea Restaurant – $50 Gift Certificate, F & S Golf Carts – $50 Cash Donation, Fido’s Restaurant – Lunch for Two X 2, Go Fish Belize – One Full Day Flats Fishing Trip – $850 value, Go Fish Belize – One Hour Fly Casting Lesson – $100 value, Graniel’s Dreamland – Decorative Wooden Dolphin & Fish Trivet (2 pieces) $100 value total, Hidden Treasure Restaurant – promised Gift Certificate, Island Buzz Cafe – Breakfast or Lunch for Two – $40 value, Jambel’s Jerk Pit – Buffet for 2 – $80 value, JoSe’s Salon – Wash & Blow Dry $50 value, Leslie’s Salon – Gift Certificate for Haircut & Eyebrow Wax, Lola’s Pub – $50 Bar Tab, Mambo Chill Boutique – $100 Gift Certificate, Melt Cafe – $100 Gift Cert – Bar or Food, Moncho’s Rent-A-Cart – 24-Hour Golf Cart Rental, Palapa Bar – $50 Gift Certificates x 2, Paradise Framing – promised, Pampered Paws – One Flea & Tick Bath – $35 value, Pampered Paws – One Full Groom – $50 value, Paradise Framing – Picture Frame $100 value, Premium Wines – $50 Gift Certificate, Palapa Bar – $50 Gift Certificate X 2, PepperOni’s – One 16″ Pepperoni Pizza and One 16″ Specialty Pizza, Planet’s Pizza – One Large Pizza – One Cheesy Bread – One Liter Coke – $50 value, Pupuseria Salvadorena – Dinner for Two – $50 value, Ramon’s Pineapple Restaurant – Dinner for Two, Reef Restaurant – Lunch or Dinner for Two – $75 value,Rum, Cigar & Coffee House – $50 Gift Certificate, SP Hardware – $20 Cash Donation, Sandbar – $50 Gift Certificate, Sandy Point – Two – Night Stay at X’Tan Ha value, Seaduced – Sunset Cruise for Two – $200 value, Searious Adventures – Sunset Sail for Four, Sol Spa – Gift Certificate for a Manicure & Pedicure, Squirrel’s Nest – $50 Bar Tab, SunBreeze Hotel – 2-Night Stay – $700 value, SunBreeze Suites – 2-Night Stay – $700 value, Sunrise Island Bar & Cuisine – Lunch for Two – $50 value, Suya Tours – Lamanai Tour for One Person, The Nook – $100 Gift Certificate for Food & Drinks, Top Notch Boutique – $50 Gift Certificate, Toucan Gift Stores – $100 Gift Certificates x 2, Victoria House Palmilla Restaurant – Dinner for Two, Warpaint – Doggy Outfit – (girl), Wayo’s Beernet – $50 Bar Tab, Wild Mango’s – $200 Gift Certificate, Wine de Vine certificate and Wings – Doggy Carrier
A Few Pictures
Danny Vega was broadcasting live from our local Belize radio station San Pedro Breeze. Saga had lots of great party activities going on: food, raffles, a silent auction, palm & paw readings, face painting, Smooch-a-Pooch booth & kids games including Halloween twister & a sack race.
There were some great pet costumes this year. Some really good ready made ones, along with some cool crafty handmade ones, like the burger stand and bag of dog food. Don’t forget to the like Saga Humane Society facebook page and see more party details and animal updates.