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Aug 17, 2023

The Gift of Giving Spreads Far and Wide through Ladyville Highlights NGO

Ladyville Highlights is a popular Facebook page and is used by Albert Magdaleno to share people’s plights, their dire need or misfortune they might have recently suffered. Through that exposure, other people from all over Belize and mainly North America send donations to Magdaleno to distribute among those needy persons. The charity work that he engages in has consumed his entire life, to the point that he walked away from his government job and his pension, registered his Ladyville Highlights charity as a non-government organization, to become a full-time charity worker with the help of his donors. Currently in Belize are two of those donors, both Belizeans who migrated decades ago and are vacationing back home. They came bearing gifts and News Five’s Marion Ali caught up with one of them today. Here’s that report  in tonight’s episode on Belize On Reel.


Marion Ali, Reporting

These are Belizean born women, Lisa Brannon Williams and Ava Vialdores. Both migrated to the United States many years ago and live in different states. They happened to meet up in Belize when they visited on their vacation and met, for the first time with Albert Magdaleno – the man whose cause they’ve been sending boxes of groceries, medical supplies, household appliances and more to so he can distribute to the people he lobbies for through his Ladyville Highlights Facebook page.  We were lucky today to meet Ava Vialdores, who moved to the U.S. in 1969. She said she discovered Magdaleno’s page one year ago and became a donor.


Ava Vialdores

Ava Vialdores, Donor, Ladyville Highlights

“I used to scroll a lot on Youtube and then I saw him. This was maybe about a year ago. So what happened, I was planning to come to Belize, so I just decided I got to look him up. He had a couple people on there that were really bad. There was a man with one leg sleeping at the graveyard. That for me I didn’t like. I thought that was so sad because he didn’t have any family. So I decided well, I’m coming down here to do some business, let be just go and meet him.”


The donors who contribute to the charity effort are like Vialdores. They’re hard-working people who simply want to help their fellow humans back home who need it.


Ava Vialdores

“I love what he’s doing. I love it because – if there were more people like him, this world wouldn’t be the way it is right now. People are human and the way they’re treated to not be able to get the help they need, that’s not far.”


Marion Ali

“You’ve been instrumental for the past year yourself. What have you been doing?”


Ava Vialdores

“Well Since I came here, I’ve been helping with taking stuff to all the people that are sick and I didn’t have that in mind when I got here.”


Albert Magdaleno has been on TV before. His page has gotten so popular that the work he engages in consumed all his waking hours and takes him all over Belize, distributing goods to people. He told us that he had to give up his job as a postman and his pension after working with the government for many years for the charity work he now does. But he gets assistance from some of the same donors so he can continue the work.


Albert Magdaleno

Albert Magdaleno, Good Samaritan

“December of last year I decided you know, what, I want to do what I do full time. I want to give the rest of my life bringing a smile on other people’s face.”


Marion Ali

“You walked left pension, gratuity…”


Albert Magdaleno

“Yes, I walked left everything because there’s no guarantee in life. I have seen people say, “Next year I wa get mi gratuity,” and I watch them drop down dead. I watch people get sick and nuh get fi enjoy dehn – soh I seh yoh know what, life is short. Let me do something meaningful with my life and I walked away from it. Money is not everything. God will provide anyhow and he does. Every so often somebody would say, “Mr Magdaleno I love the work that you do,” and they would slip me something for me, for me. And they would be very strict with me and would say, “Listen to me, this is not to give away you know. This is for you because you also have your expenses. I have to pay internet, water, light, mortgage, I have to eat fi live. Thanks to good people, Mr Wallace in New York City, and several other people who make a monthly contribution to Ladyville Highlights so that I can be able to sustain myself and take care of my bills and gas fi run the van. Ms Urlese Gill in New York City just sent me some gas money – very appreciative of it.”


But Magdaleno could use some volunteers to distribute the goods to people. And it’s something that Vialdores appeals for on his behalf.


Ava Vialdores

“I wish I was here that I could help him more because he’s got tons of clothes and all kinds of things – things that he needs help with and if people would volunteer their time to help, you know, but a lot of times people have motives. They don’t want to do anything – they want to get paid. And that’s not how life is, you see because they could end up in that same position that these people are in.”


Marion Ali 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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