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Aug 12, 2016

B.D.F. Wraps Up Annual Summer Program

Summer camps are winding down and students are preparing to return to classrooms. One of the biggest camps concluded today with a display at Price Barracks. Hundreds of children took part in the B.D.F. summer program that started in July and had different components. News Five’s Isani Cayetano reports.

 

Isani Cayetano, Reporting

The annual Belize Defense Force Youth Summer Program concluded today at Price Barracks where over four hundred children participated in activities ranging from martial arts to construction and even visual arts.  The camp was held in two sessions at three military compounds across the country.

 

Alvin Amoa

Major Alvin Amoa, Camp Coordinator

“The first part of the camp started in July, from the eleventh to the twenty-second of July here at Price Barracks and we had chess, tae kwon do, swimming, cooking, arts, construction and music.  The second part of the camp start from the first of August and was finished today, twelfth of August.  This camp was not only run at Price Barracks for the August session but it was also run at Fairweather Camp, Belizario Camp.  Overall, for the total camps, we had a total of just over four hundred children attending this summer camp.  This summer camp was an initiative at the time by the Ministry of National Security and handed over to the B.D.F. to run the summer camp during the summer break for the kids.  The aim of this camp was to get the kids in to physically and mentally challenge their minds and to keep them from off the streets.”

 

Grandmaster Michael Hansel is an instructor in tae kwon do.  He has been coming to Belize to participate in the summer camp since 2011.

 

Michael Hansel

Grandmaster Michael Hansel, President, Traditional Tae Kwon Do International

“This is our fifth year coming down to the youth camps in Belize at Price Barracks.  It’s part of a mission outreach that we have in our church, as well as our organization.  We bring down backpacks, we also bring shoes for the children for school; those are the two things they need the most.  And our tae kwon do program here is basic children’s self-defense but it’s also an opportunity for us to expose them to the kinds of discipline they need to help them to grow in other areas too, including in school.  So it’s mostly about discipline and fellowship.”

 

The sessions at Price Barracks were open to residents of the Ladyville and Lord’s Bank communities.

 

Major Alvin Amoa

“These kids were selected by sending out application forms at the various installations.  The parents or the kids came in and collected the form, filled in the forms and we then took in the kids.  The first part of the program was actually for only a hundred and forty kids, but because we had a vast number of over a hundred and ninety we did not turn them away.  We actually took in the whole hundred and ninety that came in July.  So it’s not a matter of selection, it’s just a matter of them showing up and we actually kept them here for the camp.”

 

Reporting for News Five, I am Isani Cayetano.

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