As the Love Foundation strives towards creating a positive impact and a change within Belize, many have seen its dedication towards improving the lives of Belizean citizens. As a result, in times of need, blessings are received and this time was no different. Recently, the foundation has received numerous grants, garnering the support of many towards their goal of spreading love and uplifting Belize. The Love Foundation has been selected as one of the recipients of this year’s two year, Anti-Corruption Grant, which was offered by the US Government, to any country battling corruption. Of all the applicants, Belize’s Love Foundation, was one of the four to be accepted globally. Executive Director of the Love Foundation, Deborah Sewell spoke on the various grants that the foundation has recently received.
Deborah Sewell Executive Director Love Foundation: “Love Foundation recently received three grants : one from the US embassy which is the most recent under the CARSI Project and that is to actually work with public service officers and youth in the areas of anticorruption so we are going to be developing a Multimedia anticorruption development campaign and we are going to be doing training with Public service officers alongside the Ministry of Public service then we also received funding from the British High Commission and the Canadian Commission and those two fundings will allow us to continue to work with young women who are uneducated, undereducated, have been involved in issues of violence, have behavioral issues to be able to find work, employment, able to go back to school if that’s what they choose to do or get involved in some vocational or entrepreneurial activity but the whole purpose of these projects, the leap projects under the British High Commission and the Canadian Commission is to assist young women in becoming sustainable and and being able to take care of their families. On the other hand the funding we received under the US Embassy under the CARSI project is to be able to actually start working towards getting people to realize how to deal with issues of corruption. Most people think that corruption involves money or the stealing of money or something like that. Corruption it affects all of us on every level and so being able to work with individuals who are in a position to do something about it and help them to feel empowered to be able to make changes that will lessen the issues of the corruption in our country.”
Sewell spoke on the significance of the Love Foundation receiving the anti-corruption grant, which can be considered a small organization compared to the many others in various countries that had applied.
Deborah Sewell Executive Director Love Foundation: “For me it is very significant because Love Foundation is only four years old. You know we have done a lot in four years. We have managed to have a really great relationship with the US Embassy as far as meeting our requirements and our guidelines for this funding because one of the things that people need to realize is that along with this funding there is a lot of guidelines . You really have to ensure that you are meeting these guidelines and so sometimes it’s difficult for a small organizations because we make be perceived to not have the capacity to be able to that. We have shown over the years that we do have the capacity. We have been able to manage our funds well, we have been able to meet all of our reporting guidelines and so every time we don’t take it for granted that we are going to be funded. Every time we apply we go through probably the same headache , the same kind of stress that everybody else does however it’s for me it just feels it’s just a great reward for hard work and it just shows that there is dedicated team behind me, it’s just not me but we do have dedicated team and so this is a big deal for us because this is how we thrive as a foundation. We rely on funding to be able to give us the seed monies to be able to start making some real impact in our country.”
She also spoke on the grant preparations the foundation had to undertake even before they knew whether they were going to be selected as recipients.
Deborah Sewell Executive Director Love Foundation: “Once you are notified the project has to start October 1st so it puts us in a very precarious situation because we have been planning not knowing if we would really get the grants so we have been putting measures in place to be able to hit the ground running once the announcement came so a lot of it has to do with faith because you really during the summer we have been preparing, we have been planing, we have been meeting you know and when we meet with people we say we applied for a grant. We are not sure if we are going to get it if we do we would like to have partnership with you to do x y and z so the planning has already started happening so we are able to hit the ground running on October 1st.”
Sewell thanked the British High Commission, the Canadian Commission to the US Embassy, Belize’s Women’s Department, the Ministry of Public Service as well as the University of Belize, who are a part of the Organization’s hard-work and success.