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Oct 9, 2019

CARSI-ESF Awards US $750,000 in Grants

The U.S. Government, through the CARSI-ESF grant programme, has awarded seven hundred and fifty thousand U.S. dollars to three organizations in Belize. Since 2007, over nine million U.S. dollars have been awarded to civil society groups.  Today’s funding is just one part of over forty million U.S. dollars awarded through the CARSI programme to Belize. News Five attended today’s grant signing ceremony in Belmopan. Andrea Polanco tells us more.


Andrea Polanco, Reporting

Three organizations received seven hundred and fifty thousand USD dollars in grants from the Central America Regional Security Initiative Economic Support Funds, better known as CARSI-ESF. The grant awards are to be used to carry out two year projects to promote good governance and to improve services and response to gender-based violence and human trafficking. Today, the U.S. Chargé d’Affaires Keith Gilges signed over the grants to the recipients


Keith Gilges

Keith Gilges, U.S. Chargé d’Affaires

“Here in Belize, we hope the grants contribute to increased citizen participation and oversight so that all government are responsive to the people. Through the CARSI-ESF program this year we ask our 2019 grantees to focus on one of at least two objectives; to strengthen the partnership between civil society and the government or to improve government services that respond to gender based violence and trafficking in persons especially for vulnerable and marginalized populations.”


RET was awarded two hundred and ninety six thousand and two hundred ninety-six US dollars to implement a project that will create raise awareness and create a resource and reference guide for enhanced access to services for gender-based violence and trafficking in persons.


Landee Longsworth

Landee Longsworth, Monitoring & Evaluations Officer, RET Belize

“RET will be working in nine municipalities in the districts of Belize, Cayo and Stann Creek to increase the awareness and visibility of key stakeholders, protocols and structures for accessing services that respond to TIP at the national level, municipal level and community level for improved support to the women and youth victims or at risk for TIP. To strengthen mechanisms structure, processes and human capacity for increased coordination, monitoring, reporting and response to women and youth victims at risk for TIP and GBV. To improve access to government services that respond to TIP and GBV at community level through strengthened public-private partnerships and enhanced CSO monitoring for accountability , timely and transparent service delivery.”


The second recipient of the CARSI-ESF grant for 2019 is the Trust of the Americas. They received two hundred and nine thousand and five hundred USD dollars to implement a phase two of a project that seeks to promote an open public administration in Belize.


Starret Greene

Starret Greene, Representative, The Trust of the Americas

“In Phase two we are going to build capacity in government and other actors so that we can strengthen the relationship and the partnership to achieve open government. The last of our objectives in phase two is to empower communities through innovative solutions and to generate livelihoods that promote good governance and I believe that we can achieve those goals.”



Through the grant, Youth Enhance Services will be using  their two hundred and forty thousand five hundred dollars on a project that will see better support and protection of marginalized women, girls, children affected by commercial sexual exploitation, trafficking and domestic violence.


Karen Cain

Karen Cain, Director, Youth Enhancement Services

“This two year project has four main goals. Goal one is to strengthen the family support for at risk youth by collaborating with the NCFC to train trainers utilizing the newly approved parenting manual. Goal two is to enhance knowledge and skills of government and non-governmental employees using results based management approach. Goal three, provide capacity building to enhance awareness and sensitize youth advocates to aid in the prevention and identification of possible victims of human trafficking and commercial sexual exploitation. The last goal is to increase access to alternative shelters, legal representation and psycho-social supports for victims of commercial sexual exploitation, trafficking and domestic violence.”


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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