Belize Educational Service Group moves into a full-fledged service association

Belize Educational Service Group moves into a full-fledged service association

Students often see themselves as global citizens. It’s no different for the graduates from National Tsing Hua University in Taiwan, who are part of the Belize Educational Service Group. Since the COVID-19 pandemic, perspectives of people and life are changing. While the group has changed its name, its mission is the same. Dale McDougall met some of the representatives of the group at the Taiwan Embassy in Belize City this morning and he filed this report. 

Dale McDougall, Love News: The Belize Educational Service Group is stepping up their game. They are now being developed into the Taiwan Belize Education Development Association – but their goals remain: cooperating, sharing, and educating. They are hoping to match the needs and supply and establish a stable relationship with institutes here in Belize. Ambassador David Kuan-Chou Chien hosted the representatives from the association, who are alumni of the National Tsing Hua University. 

blankDavid Kuan-Chou Chien – Taiwan Ambassador to Belize: “TEBDA’s aim is to match the Belizean need with the Taiwanese supply to benefit the local students here in Belize. As you know the very important mission of this embassy the Embassy of Taiwan in Belize is to promote and upgrade the civil interactions between Taiwan and Belize and the second one is to work with the local government and private sector to advance the benefit and wellbeing of Belizean people.”

And how they are doing that? They are focusing on technical and vocational training and health. They’ve been doing so for more than a decade as JT Yang explains. 

blankJT Yang – Taiwan Belize Education Development Association: “Our main program, our main project previously in the service group is we hold IT workshops, we hold IT courses in the rural area mainly in the Cayo district. We work with several primary schools and also high schools. We provide courses not just for the students but also for the teachers. We try to provide advanced courses for the teachers to enrich their teaching experience and also we collect refurbished laptops and computers and ship them to Belize and try to distribute them to the local centers.”

Like Yang, Jack Chen is a graduate of National Tsing Hua University and they both joined the group two years ago at the height of the pandemic. He reflected on why the association’s work is important more than ever. 

blankJack Chen – Taiwan Belize Education Development Association: “During these two  years of pandemic we didn’t stop both of us kept on working while we were down here and this two years gave us more time to reflect on what we have done here and how to revise our program and how to extend our program to reach out to more people here. In this way we can have more corresponding relationships with our partners not students anymore.”

On the health front, the association is paying a particular focus on chronic, non-communicable diseases such as diabetes. They are doing this by promoting better nutrition and access to critical medication. 

JT Yang – Taiwan Belize Education Development Association:“The reason why we have these chronic disease is that we did the survey in Taiwan we noticed just like you mentioned the diabetes and all kinds of diseases here in Belize the rate is pretty high so that is why we tried to cooperate with the local hospital and also and diabetes association here to provide education related to chronic disease.”

And this program is just one of many successes, according to Ambassador Chien, which have come as a result of the bilateral relationship Belize and Taiwan have marked for more than 30 years. 

David Kuan-Chou Chien – Taiwan Ambassador to Belize: “It has been thirty four years since Taiwan built the diplomatic ties with Belize in 1989. Over the past thirty four years the Embassy of Taiwan has worked with the government of Belize in implementing numerous collaborative projects ranging from infrastructure, agriculture, climate resilience, ICT and education. As you know education plays a very important role in the national development of Belize and also it is the main pillar of the economic growth of a country.”

For the graduates themselves, the work continues. It’s to develop minds, improve lives, and change the world.

Jack Chen – Taiwan Belize Education Development Association: “And for me my dream for this association is we can meet as much people here that we can embed the seed of hope in their hearts and I wish one day when they grow up they are blooming, they have strong fruits to feed others.

Dale McDougall, Love News. 

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