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Off to the Races

Off to the races this morning. Between work – dropping little Erin off at school at 8:30 – getting Cherie to Tropic Air for 9:30 and Cindy & Clement to Jacks for snorkeling we were not able join the Otters for Breakfast at Estel’s. We did catch up with the tale end of it  and got to enjoy a few peoples company over scrambled eggs and fried Jacks.

It is a sad news evening on Ambergris Caye tonight –  Belize business magnate Sir Barry Bowen Dies in plane crash along with  2 other adults and two children p passed due to a plane crash. For more information please see San Pedro Sun and Ambergris Today. Sincere condolences to all who have been affected by this tragedy.

I will leave you with an update email I got from Joanne of Direct Abundance today. She was on the mainland for a conflict resolution seminar. As you can see in the email – things are going great and  moving right along for Direct Abundance.

Tropic Air San Pedro BelizeHI Folks!

A quick email to let you know what has been happening in our campaign to Unite Against Abuse.

As most of you are aware, we have presented workshops in Belize, including schools, the Chamber of Commerce, The Belize Central Prison, and other community locations.  In addition we have been gaining media awareness through radio and television shows and local newspapers.

We are forming a “International United Against Abuse Foundation”
have 6 members, and are awaiting a word on a Chartered Accountant to join us. We are expecting a launch of this Coalition in June, after all the formalities have been taken care of.

Currently Cynthia Ellis is spearheading the Foundation, with Tina Rorrer from TWAW, myself,  Anna Silva (Executive Director of Mary Open Doors) and Antionette Moore (Lawyer) being the other members.

Our goal is to bring National Attention and Resources for eradicating Domestic Violence to Belize with this coalition.

Cynthia Ellis is currently seeking a representative from each district, to form a sub committee – to gain support for counselling and shelters in each district. Each area will be responsible for gaining the support of the community in which the services will be provided. Miss Ellis will find a representative from each district to locate empty buildings in each district that are owned by the government or the churches to develop 6 safe houses on the mainland.

We will also try to gain support for Mary Open Doors through donations drives.  I have connected Miss Ellis and Miss Silva with Theresa Oostra, Executive Director of Rural Human Services in California.  Hopefully she will be able to help Mary Open Doors and the other shelters with donation drives and fundraising activities.

Grants have been applied for to start a structural building of a Shelter in San Pedro and we are hoping that through the District Committees that we will be able to get the other 4 shelters built.

The San Pedro Sun has offered media attention, or any kind of advertising we need to get fundraising activities in place. Mel Pas, President of the Lions Club, will also support fundraising activities and we will see if there is any support we can obtain from Lion’s International.

Today we did the morning show on Plus TV in Belmopan, and they have invited us back to gain more media exposure, creating awareness, and informing them of any progress we are making.

We have applied for Domestic Training grants, so that we can continue to raise awareness throughout the country.  We have been asked to present in more schools and do on-going work in the prison. In addition we are taking requests from schools and businesses both in the private and Public Sector to do workshops and awareness sessions.  If you are aware of schools that would like the workshop presented to their staff, please contact me.

We will be doing a newsletter and sending it out to keep everyone informed of the progres and news on Domestic Violence in Belize.

Things are moving rapidly here, and we appreciate your continued support and hope that we will be able to form many valuable partnerships in our efforts to eradicate Domestic Violence.

Best Regards,

Joanne O’Brien
Direct Abundance

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