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Jun 22, 2021

Raffles to Encourage Belizeans to “get the jab”

Since it started the COVID-19 Vaccination Rollout, the Ministry of Health’s goal has been to get two hundred and fifty-one thousand Belizeans over the age of eighteen fully vaccinated.  But three months later, only eight percent of this population has taken advantage of the vaccinations being offered.  To increase these numbers, the M.O.H.W. is looking at incentives. And as News Five’s Paul Lopez found out, some other agencies and private sector entities are also joining the vaccination drive with some temptations of their own.  They are using that ever popular game of chance: the raffle.


Michel Chebat, Minister of Health and Wellness

“Now, what we are doing is, we are teaming up with some of our businesses to provide incentives to people who get out and get vaccinated. We are also looking to see how we can ease up, how we can allow people who have been fully vaccinated some other level of freedom, from those who have not yet been vaccinated will not yet be allowed to enjoy.”


Paul Lopez, Reporting

One of the first organizations to capitalize on Belizeans’ love of the chance to win something was Saint Martin De Porres Parish in Belize City. They announced that as of June fourteenth, anyone who gets vaccinated at the Swift Hall will be entered in a raffle. Five hundred dollar gift prizes are included in the raffle, as well as appliances.

The Belize Police Department is also using a raffle, to try and increase their vaccine uptake which is currently less than twenty percent. On June seventeenth, Commissioner of Police Chester Williams announced that the Department is raffling a night for two at Ka’ana Resort.


Chester Williams

Chester Williams, Commissioner of Police

“What I am doing as of today is that every police officer that gets vaccinated, their name will go in a thing for a raffle, and we are raffling a night for two at Ka’ana resort in Cayo District. The night for two will also include continental breakfast and the likes. So, it is done with a move to try and provide some incentives to officers who may want to be vaccinated. And I know that there are some people who are afraid of getting vaccinated. But I believe it is a good thing.”


And on Friday, June eighteenth, RF&G held a vaccination drive for the public, at the Gordon House compound on Coney Drive in Belize City. Those who showed up to take the Covid-19 vaccine on that day were also entered into a raffle. RF&G has a wide range of possible prizes.


Jaselle Young

Jaselle Young, Marketing Liaison, RF&G

“One of the reasons to get persons to come out is not only to take the vaccine, because this is what it is based around, but we decided to just throw in a little incentive in there as well. So, one of the tactics that we have used is, for every person that takes the vaccine today their name gets entered a raffle. And we are giving four prizes today. We are giving two baskets, one from RF&G Life, one from Madisco. We are doing a dinner for two at Biltmore. And we are also doing, which I call the Grand Prize from Sunny Breeze Hotel, which is a night’s stay for two persons and two kids if you have any kids you want to take along with you.”


While the Belize Tourism Board giveaway features three luxury “stayacation” packages for some lucky frontline workers and members of the general public who take their first dose between June tenth and August thirty first.


Linette Canto

Linette Canto, Public Relations Manager, B.T.B.

“For the Grand Caribe Staycation package you get two thousand five hundred dollars cash. You get round trip ticket, via tropic air for two persons. You get two nights stay at Grand Caribe. You get breakfast for the two days, and you get a memorable sunset cruise. If you win the Naia vacation, you get two thousand five hundred dollars cash. You get the travel via tropic air, to Placencia, for two persons again. You get two nights stay, breakfast for two days. You get a wonderful beach front dinner, and you get a couple’s massage. So, we encourage each and everyone listening to get vaccinated as soon as possible.”


To enter the B.T.B. raffle, frontline workers should post an image with their vaccination card on social media with the hashtag #FrontlineHeroBz. Any other person should use the hashtag #belizevaccinechamp with their image.

The Ministry of Health is currently in Phase Four of its vaccination roll out plan. This phase includes all public servants that were not covered in the first three phases, as well as transportation workers, both public and private. Persons who fall under phases one, two and three who have not taken the vaccine are encouraged to go and do so.


Michel Chebat

Michel Chebat, Minister of Health and Wellness

“I keep on saying, the medical team keeps on saying, that the advantage of being vaccinated, far outweighs any side effects that you may suffer. So, again we are teaming up with the business community to see how we can best get incentives out there.”


Reporting for News Five, I am Paul Lopez.


News Five understands that additional businesses and corporations, including a couple of the main grocery chains in Belize City, will roll out their vaccination incentive packages as the weeks progress.

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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