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Several students were once more honored by the Belize Police Department’s “Do The Right Thing” program, which hopes that with the recognition of positive role models, more youths will stay on the right side of the law.

Seventeen year-old fourth-form student Yesenie Reyes of San Pedro High School was selected, along with eight other students from around the country, to receive the special recognition for the month of March.

During her four years spent at San Pedro High, Yesenie has maintained an impeccable record and fine character that comes from inner strength. She performs well in school and has progressed in her academics through self-discipline and the ambition to reach goals through education. She is actively involved in the sports of soccer and has represented her school well for four straight years. Yesenie is also respectful and well disciplined and a member of an NGO program called “Guardians of the Reef”, in which she attends workshops and seminars and participates in various educational programs.

According to Nuri Muhammed, coordinator for “Do The Right Thing”, the program is an effort to acknowledge and to big up young people for actions that are examples of good citizenship, examples of productive living, and examples of overcoming the challenges that so many young people are faced with. “They need to get an environment where the society is applauding doing the right thing to counter the amount of exposure to so much negative behavior, both among youths and so-called models in society,” said Muhammed. The program is benefiting the community by reinforcing socially desirable behavior among youths. It also serves as a means of demonstrating that “well behaved kids”, are worthy of recognition and will strengthen efforts in building a healthy and positive working relationship between the Police Department, youths and the Community.

Other students selected for the month of March 2006 included: *Fifteen year-old Shiffana Flowers of Edward P. Yorke High School in Belize City, who lost her mother in 2002, but despite this sad episode in her life, she learnt to cope with the loss through counseling and assistance from community members.

*Martha Sanchez, a third year art student from Belmopan Comprehensive High School, who is described as a very responsible student, demonstrating excellent leadership skills, always participating in class activities, very reliable, and hard-working.

*Eighteen year-old Ramona Garcia from Independence High School, who was born in Maya Mopan village in Stann Creek, who is an outstanding student admired for her resilience in not allowing very sad and unfortunate family and personal situations to bring her down. She is able to support herself finically by cleaning practically everyday at a local business establishment. In the year 2003, Ramona became a member of the Christ Sanctuary Youth Group, where she participated in several community projects, and did a community internship in the year 2005.

*Danny Shal from the Toledo Community College who is presently the President of the Student Council of T.C.C. He campaigned and won the majority of votes of the student body. His role as Student Council/President allows him to exercise leadership skills and positively influence youths at T.C.C.

*Gerson Calderon, a student of Sacred Heart College, who has demonstrated a complete turn around in his life and attitude towards getting a good education. He changed from a tardy student to one that remains committed and dedicated with the assistance of counseling.

*Manuel Morroquin, a second form student from Escuela Secundaria Tecnica Mexico, who is from the village of Copper Bank was also honored. Due to the death of his father and his mother leaving the country, he works and puts himself through school and also assist in meeting his little sister half way with her tuition. He displays the characteristics of a responsible leader and is willing to do whatever it takes making sacrifices in order to assist himself and his family.

*Artemio Cowo, from Orange Walk Technical High School, who is a quiet, respectful and trustworthy person was also nominated. He assists with the chores at home and works on weekends to assist in paying his tuition and is an active member in one of the youth groups in his community.

*Justin Goff from Belize Rural High School, who is an outstanding student and has maintained positive behavior, ranking between 4th and 6th place during his school years. Justin is self motivated, hard working and after working tirelessly with his brother, has excelled in opening his own Block Factory.

Photo Caption:
Yesenie Reyes

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