Belize - Belize News - - Great Belize Productions - Belize Breaking News
Home » Crime, People & Places, Social Issues » Scholarships to Prevent Gang Recruitment in At-Risk Youth
Jun 21, 2021

Scholarships to Prevent Gang Recruitment in At-Risk Youth

Kareem Musa

Intervention has been one of the longstanding approaches used to tackle gang violence, particularly in south side Belize City.  And while the approach offers relief from violence to these communities, that relief is often temporary.  For a more permanent solution to this plaguing issue, Minister Musa argues that the issue of poverty among the most vulnerable must first be addressed.  One step being taken by the Ministry of Education is the issuance of forty scholarships to young men and women who have reached a phase in their life where they are most likely to be recruited by a gang.


Kareem Musa, Minster of Home Affairs and New Growth Industries

“Having interventions is short term. Because like you rightly said, you are just bringing them together. But something could flare up very easily within these gangs and result again in another spike in crime and another spike in killing. But that is not your end goal you know. Your end goal should be to create opportunities, to get our young men in school. All the way through to high school, to graduate six forms, that should be the end goal. If they are not good in academics, then get them the skill training program. And that is why it is a holistic approach. A lot of time we tend to blame the police for crime. But, at the end of the day, you must look at the Ministry of Human Development, the Ministry of Youth and Sports, to see what different Ministries are doing to take our young people out of poverty so that they do not turn to a life of crime. We have had discussions already with various ministries, starting with the Ministry of Education. The Honorable Francis Fonseca saw that there was this need for scholarship opportunities within these marginalized communities. He came out and indicated to me right away, I have forty scholarships I want to offer to these communities. Could you identify these young men that are exactly right there at the cusp of being recruited by these gangs, but certainly want to live a better life. Let us offer them this opportunity. So, we have located these individuals. There is a lot more that we want to offer these scholarships, but certainly it is a good start.”

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.

Advertise Here

Comments are closed