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Dec 13, 2013

Inspirational artwork of children with disabilities featured in 2014 calendar

The Special Envoy for Women and Children today launched the latest edition of the Inspiration Calendar. The artwork in the calendar was done by children with special needs who started to paint and draw since July of this year. Its release has now become a tradition at this time of the year and Kim Simplis Barrow says it is imperative to give children with disabilities space to grow their imagination and creative skills. Duane Moody was present at the launch and has the following report.

 

Duane Moody, Reporting

The fourth edition of the Inspiration Calendar was launched today by the Office of the Special Envoy for Women and Children. The 2014 calendar showcases the artwork of children with special needs from across the country. Through CARE Belize and Special Olympics Belize, the artists and their artwork were submitted along with biographical information of the children. The young artists were all honored at today’s event as they were presented with signed copies of the calendar; showcasing their respective art pieces.

 

Kim Simplis Barrow

Kim Simplis Barrow, Special Envoy for Women and Children

“Every year is as exciting as the first when I see the creativity of our young artists in the drawings we receive. For these special needs children, physical and intellectual challenges present many obstacles in their daily lives which is why it is a pleasure for me to be able to give them this borderless space to express themselves, using art as a means to stimulate their imagination and spark their creativity. Apart from the inspiration it provides year round, what also makes this project so important is that the calendar is a constant reminder of the need for inclusion and having special needs is not a reason for a child to be left out. Children with disabilities do have talent; they have their own ideas and opinions; they have abilities.”

 

Minister of Education, Patrick Faber, addressed the gathering on the inclusion of children with special needs within the education system.

 

Patrick Faber

Patrick Faber, Minister of Education

“The government of Belize is also pleased that of the Millennium Goals that we are aiming for, for the year 2015 that one such goal that we are on target on is that of achieving universal primary education. And we are pleased that in this country we are at ninety-five percent of that goal. And I raise that because I want to highlight that that five percent that we are missing, while we are not able to prove empirically, we believe has a lot to do with those students who have slipped through the cracks because they have special needs. Children that have these special needs are applauded and of course are encouraged by the Ministry of Education. We are now looking at our strategies. You know that we do a lot through NARCIE already and through other elements of the ministry, but we are looking at how we can seriously capture this five percent of the population that, as Miss Kim has said, does deserve our love, our care and our attention.”

 

McNab Designs, for the past three years, has taken on the designing and printing of the calendars. And today, took the opportunity to present Simplis Barrow with a cheque of twenty-nine thousand dollars, the proceeds from the 2013 inspiration agendas. Tanya McNab, also spoke on behalf of ‘Dots Per Inch’ that has partnered with the Special Envoy on this venture. McNab says that a total of ninety thousand dollars have been raised from the project for the inspiration center.

 

Tanya McNab

Tanya McNab, McNab Publishing

“It is indeed always a special day when we launch these children calendars as well as the agendas because the project allows us at McNab Design for everybody in our office to give back in some small way. Just about every single person in our office plays a role in producing these calendars. From the designs and layouts, to proofing, printing, binding, trimming, packing and delivery today. Literally everybody puts their hand on this project and we do so with a lot of pride and joy. In addition to these colorful calendars that have just presented, for the past three years, Dots Per Inch has partnered with the Special Envoy office to produce the yearly agendas from which a percentage of the age goes directly to the Inspiration Center, which we are all very excited to say is near completion in early 2014.”

 

The agendas are available for sale. To get your copy, contact the Special Envoy office at 223-1941. Duane Moody for News Five.

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