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Dec 2, 2014

Florida Cruise Lines Association hosts Annual Christmas Party for the less fortunate children in Belize

At the House of Culture, Christmas came early for hundreds of children. We found them having fun enjoying goodies, food and games. The annual Christmas party, which has now become a tradition and is hosted by the Florida Cruise Lines Association, was held this morning to bring some joy and cheer to children from Belize City who would otherwise have not had the cheerful experience. Duane Moody was also on hand for the celebration.

 

Duane Moody, Reporting

This morning at the House of Culture in Belize City, approximately two hundred primary school students were treated to a Christmas party held annually by the Belize Tourism Board, the Florida Caribbean Cruise Association and Norwegian Cruise Line.  It’s a way for the cruise associations, of which Belize is a member, to give back to the respective destinations where the cruise lines call to port.

 

Arlo Cansino, Assistant, Destination Planning and Development

Arlo Cansino

“Every year the Belize tourism board in collaboration with the Florida Cruise Association and the Norwegian Cruise Line partner up to give two hundred kids an opportunity to experience Christmas, something that many of them will not experience due to their circumstances. So the FCCA and the NCL, they provided us or sponsor two hundred gifts. And of course the Belize Tourism Board is hosting these kids. And what we have here today, we have wholesome entertainment, we have music, we have Burger the clown, and we have face painting being done. And if you were a here a little earlier, you would have heard them screaming the whole morning.”

 

The students were also provided with lunch and they were indeed enjoying themselves. While some had fun dancing, others took pleasure in playing with their friends.

 

Ivan Rivera

Ivan Rivera, Participant

“It’s cool…I like the clowns and I like the way how it looks here.”

 

Duane Moody

“Are you anticipating receiving that gift?”

 

Ivan Rivera

“Yeah. Play with my friends, get balloons, get food.”

 

Duane Moody

“Would you suggest for other people to come out and have fun the same way?”

 

Ivan Rivera

“Yeah. I was on the stage too.”

 

Keshawna Hall, Participant

Keshawna Hall

“I enjoy the clown and enjoy being with my friends from school.”

 

Duane Moody

“You got some face painting…tell us about what you got.”

 

Keshawna Hall

“I got some flowers with sparks.”

 

Duane Moody

“Ready for a gift?”

 

Keshawna Hall

“Yes I am.”

 

Duane Moody

“Would you suggest other people to come out?”

 

Keshawna Hall

“Yes I do because it is really fun and enjoyable.” OUT 03:01:37

 

It’s the eleventh year that the Christmas initiative has been taken place and according to Destination Planning and Development Assistant, Arlo Cansino, the children were chosen with the assistance of the Belize City constituencies.

 

Arlo Cansino

“The selection process was easy. We reached out to the ten constituencies in the Belize City area and we got through to eight of them. Two of them, we had a little miscommunication so we couldn’t get. It was unfortunate, but next year, these two will be first to be contacted. And of course we got the Dorothy Menzies Children’s Care. We just went out to the community and reached out to the respective offices and we ask them to please nominate twenty kids to be part of this wonderful opportunity.”

 

Duane Moody for News Five.

 

Earlier this year, a poster and essay competition was also held by the FCCA; two entries from Belize placed second and third. This initiative is also in an effort to give back to members of the association.

There is another event that will lighten the hearts of sixty deserving children.  The annual Toys for Tots program of United Airlines is holding an event for students from twelve Belize City primary schools.  The event partnered with SBK Holdings Limited from California and Grace Kennedy Limited to hold a party on Thursday afternoon at the Memorial Park for under-privileged children.

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