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    Friday, 17 January 2020 02:27
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santa_cruz2What comes to mind when you hear the words Santa Cruz and Customs Department in the same sentence? Yes, we know exactly what youre thinking but in this case you would be very wrong. This morning our news team headed to Santa Cruz where a day long cleaning campaign was going full speed. It was a collaborative effort between the Customs Department, the Santa Cruz Government School and the Department of Cooperatives. Heres the story.

Yari Catzim- Reporting

Yolanda Novelo – Principal

“La primera vez que nosotros pensamos esto es que nosotros aquí en la escuela ensenamos a los niños en cómo crear un ambiente limpio y saludable para los niños y nos dimos cuenta que aquí es un aldea que bastante gente viene a visitar y levan sus contrabando pero también dejan la basura aquí este lugar. Entonces fue una iniciativa que empezamos nosotros para la semana de educación pensamos en promover en dejar la comunidad limpia. Hoy tomamos este día para ensenarles y poder inculcar a los niños en dejar sus ambientes limpios.”

Jason Menzies – OC - Customs Dept.

“What actually happened is that because we are here so much and we are always by the riverside and there is a lot of garbage all around and whether we like it or not Santa Cruz is a gateway and so you have visitors coming and going locals and foreigners so we didn’t want them to have the impression that oh we come dah Belize and the place dirty so I spoke to Mr. Palacio from the school and ran the idea by him and he jumped right on it and said if we could provide the bags and the water and whatever it takes for the day to go on he would talk to the children about it.”

Eduardo Leiva – Dept. of Cooperatives, MOA

“Our department then approached B.S.I and BELGOGEN to see if we could get some drums. We plan to make it more presentable out a stand, a logo, a sticker and make it better for the community we plan to donate it to Santa Cruz. We have the Santa Cruz Women’s Group they threw the idea that the wanted to do a cleanup campaign and we had something in mind and when I met with Mr. Menzies he said let us join together to see what we can make better so that was the original starting idea.”

With the collaboration of these parties and the enthusiasm of the students who were the eager hands in the project, by all accounts it was a success. But it’s not only about a one day cleanup – it’s about a way of life.

Yolanda Novelo – Principal

“Nosotros les ensenamos a los niños que ay que mantener primeramente la clase limpio luego sus hogares y por fin la comunidad limpio. Esto es un pasó que los niños van aprendiendo día a día. También le pedimos que le ensenen a la comunidad. En una ocasión un niño me dijo que él le decía a un adulto que no botara su basura al suelo y el adulto le dijo que tu sabes y él le dijo la maestra nos ensena que hay que poner la basura en su lugar. Entonces podemos ver que los niños no solo aquí en las escuela lo oyes si no que ellos también tratan de ensenarle a otras personas en como mantener su comunidad.”

According to Leiva, BSI and Belcogen have committed to providing the drums, and the Department of Cooperatives will continue to transform them into garbage bins. It’s a great partnership which will benefit the community, and Principal Novelo took the time to express her appreciation.

Yolanda Novelo – Principal

“Queremos darle gracias al Customs Department que a pesar de que tiene una relación que la gente no le gusta tanto a ellos pero queremos darle gracias que nos ayudaron. También tenemos a B.S.I que donaron unos tambos, el Agriculture Departement que van a pintar los tambos y dejarlo presentable para poder traerlo en las escuela.”

We were also informed that BSI has committed to providing drums which will be put to use as garbage bins in other rural communities and in Orange Walk.

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