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Belize River Valley Development’s Symposium

The Belize River Valley Development Symposium was officially opened yesterday. The symposium is being coordinated by the Community Baboon Sanctuary Women’s Conservation Group and its President Jessie Young says the objective is to assist communities in the villages throughout Belize River Valley to organize and put in place proper systems and institutions for residents to utilize existing technical knowledge, expertise and skills. Guest speaker at the opening Ceremony was Minister Edmond Castro who says that the symposium will help villagers to profit from production of agriculture, clothing and textile.


Jessie Young, President of the Community Baboon Sanctuary Women’s Conservation Group:

Over the years we have been working with the communities and members of the Belize River Valley area and so we came up with our 5 Year management plan, and this symposium today is part of our management plans where the people have identified issues that were facing them. So we decided to put it into a symposium to invite the stakeholders and different ministry stakeholders and community leaders so that we can bring our issues to them and to see in what way we can merge everyone’s concern into one and move forward for the development of the Belize River Valley area.


Edmund Castro, Area Representative: A program like this brings the different departments together so that our people can access the necessary information and that they can get the necessary help that they need to start up their businesses whether it’s ecotourism, whether it’s agriculture and so on.

Jessie Young, President of the Community Baboon Sanctuary Women’s Conservation Group:

“It’s very important for the area representative to be here because we want him to know the concerns of the Belize River Valley area and to see in what way he can work along with us to achieve some of the things that we have on our table here today.”

Edmund Castro, Area Representative:

“I think the symposium is a useful one and very timely because it’s dealing with the development of the Belize River Valley area. What I had to share with them is to share my support with them and everyone and show them how the development over the last 8 years in terms of water for all the nine villages in the Belize River Valley area, how the infrastructure works as we are dealing with the road from Bermudan Landing to Lemonal, how the development of a new bridge at Maypen will bring more tourists and development for the area; in terms of the farmers we are open to use more farmland, in terms of other development in terms of the individual making a dollar, their ability to make a dollar to take care of themselves and their children. I spoke about seeing how we can assist the people in our area so that they can build on what they have.

The symposium was attended by villagers from throughout the area, including a large number of youths. It ended today.

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