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Jun 19, 2019

Students Rewarded for Doing the Right Thing

The Belize Police Department held its national Du Di Right Ting award ceremony today at Old Belize. Fifty-five students from around the country were recognized, with eight of them getting cash awards and the top two honored with scholarships and laptops.  The department uses the ceremony to celebrate the students who have stayed the course and give back to their schools and communities while going through personal adversities. Reporter Andrea Polanco tells us more about the programme and the two top winners of the award.


Andrea Polanco, Reporting

Fifty-five high school students were recognized for doing the right thing. The students enrolled in the Belize Police Department’s ‘Du Di Rite Ting’ programme which extends from its community policing initiatives to get youths involved and reward them for being good examples in their schools and communities.


Edward Broaster

Edward Broaster, Deputy Commissioner of Police

“They have been volunteering to do work in the schools; they are of good behavior. They help others and they help to tutor others. They also do community work in their respective communities. There are many other things that they do that enabled them to be nominated as the top ten nominees. Du the Rait Thing is significant in the fact that we want to ensure that we develop young people in the society that will appreciate the love for God, themselves and for the community and by enabling young people to do the right thing it will enable us to have a better society and communities across the country.”


Students from across the country participated in the Police Department’s year-long programme where they learned a number of skills that they used to make a difference in their schools and their communities. Ten were recognized with certificates and cash prizes for rising above their own personal challenges to make a mark in their school.  First place Cindy Zelaya of Independence High School and second place Jessica Pop of Eden SDA High School were both gifted with scholarships to sixth form, as well as a laptop each.


Cindy Zelaya

Cindy Zelaya, 1st Place, Du Di Rait Ting

“With my classmates, I tried to put them in the right path because I don’t want them to go the way that I did. So, I always tried to comfort them and give them good advice so that they don’t go through what I went through in life.”


Andrea Polanco

“Was it hard to get students to do the right thing?”


Cindy Zelaya

“Yes it was hard because we youths have a childish mind still even though we are old we have a mind as if we don’t care about anything in life but I tried to make them understand that in life nothing is easy to do. It always takes steps from the low to the high.”


Jessica Pop

Jessica Pop, 2nd Place, Du Di Rait Ting

“I write my life story about how I was struggling since I was small girl. After that I have been motivating students to love school and to help them to see that getting an education can bring them a better future. I was involved in the Pathfinders Club. I have been doing camping and promoting my school as it is the best school. I have been participating in a mental health program in Belmopan. So, I have been very active in school and that motivate me to do the right thing and to encourage young people to continue and see the bright future.   I have some friends who were in a bad situation and as a mature person that I am I used to talk to my counselor. People used to say that I was a snitch but I used to help them through that. I used to run to the counselor and tell her that there is a problem that needs to be prevented and she would deal with it and she would help the students.”


Deputy Commissioner Edward Broaster says that while there are many good initiatives happening in schools, there is still a group of young people that is out of school which must be engaged.


Edward Broaster

“While we focus on doing the right things in schools, we need to focus more on doing the right things in the communities. We need to have our leaders do the right thing in terms of looking after those who are not in school and those who are not working. We need to get those individuals who are between fourteen and twenty-one years old not attending school and not working engaged in some form of national service for this country because this is the only way we will enable our young people to have love for God, for themselves and for the community.”


Reporting for News Five, I’m Andrea Polanco.


Zelaya will be using her scholarship from the Ministry of Education to study at Independence Junior College and Pop will be attending Sacred Heart Junior College through a scholarship from that institution. 

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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