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Sep 16, 2022

Y.M.C.A. Has Space for Infants Students

On Thursday, the Young Men’s Christian Association, Y.M.C.A., was a recipient of school supplies from a U.S-based group, facilitated by Eglah’s Training Centre in Belize City. The “Y” as it is also called, has been providing youths with educational and developmental programs for decades. When we caught up with her at the handing-over, Executive Director Doctor Clara Cuellar told us that COVID did not force a shutdown of their facility. She added that families with young children who are not in school can get their children in the infants division at the “Y” since they have space.


Dr. Clara Cuellar

Dr. Clara Cuellar, Executive Director, Y.M.C.A.

“We stayed open the entire time except for the one-hour. We just reduced the service. It was quiet. We have been blessed with some donations of gently-used laptops from different organizations and we had designed and put our students on Moodle and those students are now leaders because as we bring back everybody, which we are doing right now, they already are used to the protocols both for COVID as well as the distancing in the classroom and again, we formed a close-knit of between seven and ten leaders that are going to now affect us. The biggest celebration we have at the “Y” right now is we have nine students who have been with us the least amount of years is five in that group who are now in first form. And while obviously they are heavily impacted by the two last years that were under COVID, they’re a close-knit family. They’re “Y” in and out, so as we brought back the full scheme they’re there. They’ve been with us from like standard two or standard one, and that’s huge to have that kind of retention and a support for students. So we look forward to helping them bridge the gap to make sure they’re ready for second form. We can take a few of the infants like between infant one and standard one. We still have a few spaces so anybody who wants to come who lives in our neighbourhood because the infants – it’s harder for them to catch bus and come – so for members of our community. We’re waiting until the ending of September because it’s very easy for us to pick up the phone and say to Mr. Sutherland send me five students. I’ll get ten. So we try to recruit within our neighbourhood especially for the younger students so they’re already on their way home on the bus when they stop off at the Y.”

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