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May 17, 2002

Arts Council: Parents show poor support for kids

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Every year, several hundred children bravely take the stage at the Holy Redeemer Parish Hall as part of the Festival of Arts. Their performances may vary from poetry, to musical renditions, to dance, but their dedication is the same. Unfortunately, as News 5′s Jacqueline Woods found out today, the achievements of these young people go unnoticed by a large percentage of the people who should be their number one fans.

Jacqueline Woods, Reporting

Since Monday of this week, primary school students from throughout the Belize District have been performing at the Holy Redeemer Parish Hall. The entertainment is part of the annual Festival of Arts. This year the Belize Arts Council, in conjunction with the Ministry of Tourism, sought to improve the quality of the show.

Beverly Smith Lopez, Director, Belize Arts Council

“The standard is high, and we have lots of wonderful children at the festival, a wide variety of programmes, dancing, music, vocal, drama. We are pleased with how the programme has been coming along each night. We also have been able to try and get a variety of programmes that reach within like two hours. So when we start in time by 9 o’clock it’s over. The children are happy, the parents are happy. The sound effects is much, much improved.”

Each night the children perform to the best of their ability. While the festival has improved overall, unfortunately some things have not changed. The children have not been getting the support from the persons they would like to see the most at the event.

Beverly Smith Lopez

“Parents are still not coming out to the festival with their children. We still have busloads of children coming out to the festival, and they are coming only with teachers, always just a couple parents. And we think that that is unfair for the wonderful children of Belize. I am sure that they have been able to hear the loud cheers given by groups that have made sure that the parents are there. And then they have some other groups where there isn’t a load cheer for them because they don’t have their fans with them.”

The children and schools who do well are awarded gold, silver and bronze medals. Reporting for News 5, Jacqueline Woods.

If you would like to attend the Festival of Arts, tickets are on sale at the Belize Arts Council or at the door for only five dollars.

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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