Over the past 8 years, Scouting youth from Southwestern Ontario have undertaken a number of projects in Belize. They have built a hurricane shelter/community centre, worked on improving a couple of schools and built a medical clinic. In March 2015, Venturers and Rovers from St. Thomas, Aylmer, Shedden, West Lorne, Watford, London and Windsor are continuing this legacy by helping to build a school!
We are a group of 13 scouting youth and 3 Scouters from St. Thomas and area, working to start a school that is much needed in the small village of Santa Cruz, in the western part of Belize, near the border of Guatemala. We will be digging and laying the foundation for the school. The local villagers will help in the construction but they have few resources to provide for materials. Each Scout member has committed $1250.00 towards travel costs and we are raising the additional funds. We are still short of our goal of $45,000, which includes building costs, equipment rental like a much needed backhoe and an operator. We have a number of fundraisers planned to help raise some of the remaining dollars.
Each individual that is participating in this worthwhile project has been involved in Scouting long enough to understand the values that the movement instills in youth. In preparation for the trip, the Group is becoming educated in community development initiatives. Partaking in this project will help the youth become more responsible and more resourceful members of their communities. They will be able to take this knowledge and instill it in others they come in contact with throughout their lives. By accomplishing this task we hope to expand their knowledge and understanding of issues that many young people, like themselves, face in other parts of the world. Scouts have fun adventures discovering new things and experiences they wouldn’t discover elsewhere. Along the way they develop into capable, confident and well-rounded individuals, better prepared for success in the world. These local youth are the leaders of tomorrow and we hope to use this experience to help them become better leaders and citizens as they move on through life.