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Dec 15, 2021

San Pedro Opens Domestic Violence Centre

Today in San Pedro Town, the Hope Haven Domestic Violence outreach centre was officially opened in the San Mateo area on Ambergris Caye. The centre will be offering services to both women and men who are experiencing domestic violence. With assistance from our correspondent on the island, News Five’s Duane Moody files this report. 


Duane Moody, Reporting

It took months of hard work from volunteers to restore the site, but today this property becomes a sister facility to the Hope Haven Children’s Home under the N.G.O. Raise Me Up.  The Hope Haven Domestic Violence Outreach Centre is a monumental achievement for the island says Operations Director Kristina Romero.


Kristina Romero

Kristina Romero, Operations Director, Hope Haven Domestic Violence Outreach Centre

“We find that it is important to offer services to women and women who have fallen victims to domestic violence. Here at the centre we have taken a one-stop shop approach where we will have the presence of the police department, women’s department, legal aid and mental health services. So that if a woman or man accesses the services, they can access all of these services in one day.”


Among those officials attending the official opening of the facility was the Special Envoy for Women and Families, Rossana Briceño. Briceño commended San Pedro for advancing the initiative in the fight against domestic violence and assisting those who are most vulnerable.


Rossana Briceño

Rossana Briceño, Special Envoy for Women & Families

“It sends a message that women are not alone; that there are places that women can go to for support. And in this case, San Pedro is taking the initiative, is leading the fight against domestic violence by providing support. These women can get all the services that they need to help them rebuild, to help them focus on what will be their next step. So I believe that a centre, a home, a safe haven for women throughout the districts, throughout this country would be wonderful to see them duplicate or replicate what San Pedro is doing right now.”


Area Representative Andre Perez said that domestic violence is very much alive on the island and many families are suffering in silence. After today, those victims should know that there is now a place where they can receive all forms of assistance.


Andre Perez

Andre Perez, Area Representative, Belize Rural South

“To deal with this type of plague that is affecting our community – as somebody earlier mentioned, it has to do with intoxication, it has to do with jealousy, it has to do with the stigma. That’s pretty much what our culture is all about. So we have to curb that, we have to fight that. How do we do that? It has to be a community effort and today exemplifies that.”


The Hope Haven Domestic Violence Outreach Centre comes with emergency placement bedrooms, offering shelter to victims needing a place to stay as well as kitchen and laundry facilities. Duane Moody for News Five.


Hope Haven Belize looks forward to expanding its services in the community and their vision includes the building of an empowerment centre specializing in skills training for women. These training opportunities include massage therapy, refrigeration and air conditioning training, sewing classes, mechanics training and financial literacy training.

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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