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Oct 7, 2019

BTEC is 5 Years Old!

BELTRAIDE’s training and employment centre called BTEC turned five years old this month. Today, the centre which specializes in preparing persons for the workforce, celebrated its anniversary. Back when it opened, it was to meet the growing needs of the business outsourcing sector in Belize.  Fast forward to five years later, BTEC now offers specialized sessions for the public and private sectors, as well as job preparedness training and entrepreneurship skills for those who are seeking employment.  Reporter Andrea Polanco tells us more in the following story.


Andrea Polanco, Reporting

The Belize Training and Employment Centre (BTEC) celebrated its five- year milestone today.  The unit of BELTRAIDE, which identifies as a leader in the workforce development, says that the work that they do has been instrumental in developing a well-trained and marketable workforce. It has also given many others the skills needed to create their own businesses.


Christine Smith

Christine Smith, Director, BTEC

“We have moved outside of what our original vision was. It was first to meet the BPO needs and we met that need. We moved on to meeting the needs of the private sector. The Belize Chamber and Commerce approached us in December of 2014, asking if we would be able to do professional development workshops for their membership. We started our first set of professional development workshops in January of 2015. We are one of the first companies that companies call when they want to train their employees.”


Since BTEC opened its doors in 2014, it has trained over thousand six hundred persons in multiple disciplines to equip them with job skills to find employment. According to BTEC, seventy-five percent of those persons trained at BTEC are now employed.  Apart from job skills training, BTEC also offers professional development workshops in the public and private sectors and to date one thousand seven hundred and forty-five employees have benefitted from these BTEC sessions. According to Minister of Investment, Trade and Commerce, BTEC’s impact extends beyond its 1600 trainees.


Tracy Panton

Tracy Panton, Minister of Investment, Trade & Commerce

“Miss Kelly spoke about the fact that we give skills and we don’t necessarily offer jobs, over seventy-five percent of the people who have gone through BTEC’s training course have found a way to have meaningful employment, either with an organization or by being able to start some small business of their own.  When you plant a seed and certainly that is the work that BTEC has done in terms of the one thousand seven hundred or so lives they have touched over the last five years. When you plant a seed and you help to nurture that seed, you don’t only help that one person, you help a family, you help a community, you help a country.”


Trainees have received job preparedness training in hospitality services; entrepreneurship; as well as elderly persons care. BTEC has served a number of groups, across industries from work inmates at the prison to survivors of domestic violence.


Christine Smith

“We went to Kolbe in 2015 and we did a ten-week training program with the residents of the Kolbe; young men from Wagner’s Youth facility, the ladies and persons from the general population. Out of that ten-week training persons were able to find jobs right within the prison system.   With our sister agency, SBDC Belize, we ran the BA1 program that reached out to three hundred and eighteen women who are survivors of domestic violence.   Out of those 318, two hundred and fifty of them received seed capital to do their businesses. A good number of those businesses are still up and running. So, we have been able to reach across different sectors.”


Reporting for News Five, I’m Andrea Polanco.

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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