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Aug 20, 2012

News Five wins 2 regional awards

Andrea Polanco

Turning focus from Asia to regional partners, Channel Five is a member of the Caribbean Broadcast Union (CBU). The CBU is the leading body in which Caribbean media houses converge for training, sharing expertise and awarding excellence in the region. This year, News Five has just won two awards from the CBU. Andrea Polanco and cameraman, Darrel Moguel, impressed the judges with an expose on incursions in the Chiquibul. Polanco explains the impact of that story and her joy on winning her first regional award in the category of economy and finance.


Andrea Polanco, CBU Award Winner

“Having studied in the Caribbean; you know, being mentored by a number of professors who are pioneers in media in the Caribbean, I’ve come to learn that the CBU is very prestigious particularly for this region and being recognized as one of the winners for this year’s, I’m pretty excited. I really and truly didn’t expect it, but I’m very happy though because I wanted to win it for the FCD because they are doing such wonderful work inside the Chiquibul and I think that often times they are not being recognized for their efforts. So this award I share with them. Of course I wasn’t the only one working on it. I had the help of cameraman, Darrel Moguel, and we also had the assistance of the B.D.F. and so we spent the entire day inside the Chiquibul which I think was very critical in telling the story because we were there, we went through it, we saw the scale of devastation particular with respect to the illegal logging taking place inside the Chiquibul. So certainly, this award it means a lot to me because I’ve worked with the FCD  for quite a while now and having won this award for a story I did with them, it means a lot.”


Jose Sanchez

“You did this during your first seven months at Channel Five, is that correct?”


Andrea Polanco

“Yes, you know it was just a few months into my time here at Channel Five, I went into the Chiquibul with the FCD, we did it. Really and truly I didn’t expect it because it was really rough out there in terms of walking. We walked for miles. I climbed one of the sites at the Caracol; that took me about an hour to get up. I stepped in this huge nest of ants; that was something else. So it was fun, but most importantly, I’ve been able to highlight that we have this growing problem in Belize and really and truly it seems like not much is being done. But it is good to know that we are raising awareness for the FCD and Belize.”


While Andrea and Darrel trekked deep into the Chiquibul, Alex Ellis climbed to the top of the Victoria Peak with Rowan Garel. Alex won the second award for News Five with his story on the journey of the blind boy whose father, Joe has been an inspiration. This story also received the judges’ commendation. Cameraman Alex Ellis joined the Garel’s on the top of the peak and he came back down with a CBU award.


Alex Ellis

Jose Sanchez

“What does it mean to win a CBU award?”


Alex Ellis, Winner, CBU Award

“It’s an honor to win this award especially given the nature of this story. I have a personal relationship with this story. It became much more than just a story. To me the struggle and telling Rowan’s story and having that story told became important. So to win is humbling I guess. But it is the nature of the story; it’s a great story. Not to take anything away from myself, but the story in many ways sells itself. It was meeting Rowan, spending time with Rowan and his father and that relationship between the two of them. I went into the story just wanting—it was just a good excuse to go out and produce a great story; it was interesting—but it became much more than climbing Victoria Peak. It started as a blind or visually impaired boy trying to tackle a peak or trying to tackle the second highest mountain in Belize, but it became father-son relationship; it because a struggle for myself because it wasn’t a very easy task by any means. So it started as one thing and grew into many others.”


Jose Sanchez

“Was there an epiphany at some point when you reached the top or was it after you completed the editing of the story?


Alex Ellis

“Epiphany… I don’t know if there was an epiphany. I can still look at the story and it’s surreal. Just that moment getting at the top and less about myself, but the moment when Rowan rounds the corner, I got up before him and when he rounds the corner with his father and when they hugged, I think that’s the moment that will stand with me forever.”


Jose Sanchez

“Was there any struggle with the story itself?”


Alex Ellis

“Umm writing. I’m technically inclined; I’m not necessarily a writer and Jose, yourself, he helped me; you helped me and if it wasn’t for you, it probably wouldn’t have ended up the way it was. So recognition must be given to you also.”


Jose Sanchez

“Thank you very much. And so what’s next for Alex and the camera work?”


Alex Ellis

“More of the same. Hopefully I get to tell great stories about great people. There’s lot of stories out there; everywhere in Belize. It’s full of great stories and great people and Rowan is one example. His story kinda has come to forefront now and everybody knows about him and there are so many others that need to be told and hopefully I get to opportunity to continue that.”


In the days to come, this station will be re-broadcasting the winning award stories for economy and finance and youth and social issues.

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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3 Responses for “News Five wins 2 regional awards”

  1. Rod says:

    Congradulations to channel 5. You are the best news outlet in the country of Belize the only thing I see is that you really need to press this pm on the hanging penalty and the crime rate that is spiraling more and more out of control and there is no policy to try to curb what is happening in this country we are going over the cliff and you need to press this pm and gov. On the crime situation.

  2. Storm says:

    It was a good and important story. So carry on with reporting on the problem, so it is not forgotten!

  3. Roxy says:

    Congrats Alex way to go proud! Great story indeed!

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