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Oct 16, 2019

A Community Sewing Centre for the Women in Mesop

Single and unemployed women of the Mesopotamia Division will be able to take on sewing to generate income for themselves and boost economic activity in the division. Today, a centre was opened in the division creating new opportunities to the women. The P.U.P. Standard Bearer, Doctor Candice Pitts, says the facility is one through which women can become self sufficient. News Five’s Duane Moody reports.


Duane Moody, Reporting

Traffic was impeded for a few hours today on a stretch of Collet Canal, from Pound Yard Bridge to the terminal, as a Mesopotamia Community Sewing Centre for women was launched. The facility will be accessed by single mothers and women from the smallest division in Belize City in the hopes of boosting the economic status of the community and its residents. It’s the brainchild of City Councillor, Doctor Candice Pitts, who is also the standard bearer for the People’s United Party for Mesop.


Candice Pitts

Dr. Candice Pitts, P.U.P. Standard Bearer, Mesopotamia

“The work that we have been doing in the Mesopotamia constituency so far has exposed us to some of the concerns and needs of the residents of this division. Many of them are complaining about the lack of employment and so we have thought about what industry, what factory could be most effective in this constituency. And many of them have been asking for an initiative such as this and so we decided to invest into it and to reach out to the residents to see if this is something that they could work with at this moment.”


The project is being funded by several partners and both Doctor Pitts and Mayor Bernard Wagner did not share the value of the venture. Wagner, however, says that it falls in line with their prospectus of being a council that is for the people.


Bernard Wagner

Bernard Wagner, Belize City Mayor

“We take care of the entire city and this is Candice’s initiative. As you know, she is aspiring to be the standard bearer for this area. And we felt that it is a good project. It is symbolic of our brand of being all about the people and this will change the whole narrative in this Mesopotamia area and so we support it and will continue to support initiatives that take this mentality out where people are empowered. We want them to be empowered rather than hands out.”


Duane Moody

“Sir what would you say to comments people are making that this might be just a political strategy, a political stunt by the P.U.P. just to get foothold for Miss Pitts?”


Bernard Wagner

“Well people obviously wah always have their opinion, but we know at the core of all these initiatives that we are about the people. We have, throughout the past eighteen months driven projects and policies that speak to social infrastructure. The previous council may have dealt with a lot of physical infrastructure, but at the end of the day, there are people.”


News Five has been informed that the facilities will be up and running effective Thursday and many women, living in the division, can take advantage of the opportunity.


Dr. Candice Pitts

“At this point, we are catering primarily for single and unemployed women—young and old—to help them to generate their own income; to be self-sufficient and to feel a sense of self-empowerment through generating their own income. Their training has begun. We start from the assumption that they don’t know about sewing or they probably just need to refine the skills that they have. So we will provide training for them for us to four weeks and then after that they will start to produce.”


There is no cost to the participants; the only requirement is for them to be committed and disciplined in the project. Doctor Pitts says that the intent is to tap into the clothing industry and possibly manufacture cultural attire to be sold in Belize and elsewhere. Duane Moody for News Five.

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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