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Jul 14, 2015

Police Recognize Youths Doing The Rait Ting

The tenth annual national “Du Di Rait Ting” Award Ceremony of the Police Department was held today at the Old Belize Pavilion in Belize City. It’s an initiative that started back in 2005 to encourage youths to lead productive lives and keep out of harm’s way. Hundreds of students from across the country have been awarded by the department; this morning, thirty-eight youths were added to the list. The top spot was taken once again by a young lady from the Cayo District whose story inspired everyone. Duane Moody was on hand at the ceremony and files this report.

 

Duane Moody, Reporting

A total of thirty-eight high school students were awarded for their exemplary work, despite many life changing obstacles, at the “Du Di Rait Ting” award ceremony. After a lengthy selection process, the top ten students were singled out from across the country and recognized for doing the right thing. Assistant Commissioner of Police, Keith Lino, on behalf of Allen Whylie addressed the gathering, saying that the success of these participants has the support from parents and teachers.

 

Keith Lino

Keith Lino, Assistant Commissioner of Police

“Congratulate all the participants throughout the country of Belize and all the teachers as well as all who had assisted these students during the time of participating in the Do Di Rait Ting Program. He also asked me to acknowledge and thank all the sponsors because this Do Di Rait Ting today wouldn’t be possible and accomplished.”

 

Rounding out the top ten were students from Saint Ignatius High School in Cayo, Belize Adventist College in Corozal, Independence High School in the south, the Anglican Cathedral College in Belize City and Eden Seventh Day Adventist High School, also from Cayo. This year, Eden Seventh Day Adventist High yielded three of the top ten awardees; two emerged as first and second place awardees. With her remarkable story, twenty-four year old Joycelin Chiquillo won a scholarship, a tablet, cash and free internet services for one year. She shared her story with the media.

 

Joycelin Chiquillo

Joycelin Chiquillo, Top Awardee, Du Di Rait Ting Program

“I am a person that when I was a kid, I was abused sexually, verbally and physically. And like me, there are many kids out there who are struggling to do their education. I am proud to say that I have two kids, I am a single mother; I provide for them as well as my family and it is hard to be studying and you have exam and homework and you have to have time for your kids and also to do your work.  It’s struggling, but if you are willing to do it with the help of god and your family supporting you, you can finish your education. I can say that I am really happy because hard work really pays off. I wasn’t planning to continue my education because it is really expensive. But now that I have the opportunity I am willing to do my best to be someone better for my kids and my family.”

 

With the scholarship from the Ministry of Education, Chiquillo will now be studying for an associate’s degree at the University of Belize in Belmopan. Her classmate, Melissa Harris, who is also from Eden Seventh Day Adventist High School, took second place. She too received a scholarship, but from the Sacred Heart Junior College in San Ignacio. A single mother of a nine year old boy and a seven year old girl, twenty-six year old Harris says she is overwhelmed by the honor.

 

Melissa Harris

Melissa Harris, 2nd Place, Du Di Rait Ting Program

“Whoo, well I am excited honestly because like our counselor always said, you can face your challenges and I have had several challenges throughout my four years in high school. My first year was the hardest, but my second year I managed to get a work scholarship from my high school and thankfully to them, I succeeded the remaining three days of my high school and it paid off in the end and I am actually excited because I get to get a scholarship to Sacred Heart College to pursue my goals.”

 

Reporter

“What’s that career?”

 

Melissa Harris

“Primary Education. I have a passion for children. I have two of my own, by the way, which I love very dearly. They are my motivation to continue in life and help them so they don’t have to face all these challenges in life.”

 

This year, however, twenty-eight other students, who were nominated, were also recognized as a new feature to the Du Di Rait Ting Program.

 

Chester Williams

Sr. Supt. Chester Williams, Divisional Commander, Belize Police Dept.

“For the first time today, you will see that a new feature added to the award today. In the past, there were people who would be regarded as losers because after the tenth, we give nothing further than the tenth place. But today, you will see that every student who was nominated will be given an award today. So that is the new feature that we are adding and the reason is because we want to attract more students as a part of this program. Often times we hear and see people condemning young people, but we want them to know that there are people out there who are doing the right thing. And when we come across these young people, we must do nothing less than ensure that they are recognized and awarded for doing the right thing.”

 

The participants were later hosted for lunch by the Police Department. Duane Moody for News Five.

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