Food For The Poor in Belize
Food For The Poor serves Belize primarily through donations of goods. Shipments to Belize include:
- Fourteen containers delivered in 2012
- Hygiene and personal care items
- Medical supplies
Food For The Poor ships containers of aid items to Belize and other Latin American countries every year.
Belize is slightly smaller than Massachusetts.
The mainstay of Belize’s economy is tourism. In February 2007, the government restructured nearly all of its public external commercial debt, which helped reduce interest payments and relieve some of the country's liquidity concerns. A key short-term objective remains the reduction of poverty with the help of international donors.
Current concerns include an unsustainable foreign debt, high unemployment, growing involvement in the South American drug trade, growing urban crime, and increasing incidences of HIV/AIDS.
Territorial disputes between the UK and Guatemala delayed the independence of Belize until 1981. Guatemala refused to recognize the new nation until 1992 and the 2 countries are involved in an ongoing border dispute. Guatemala and Belize are gearing up for a simultaneous referendum to determine if this dispute will go before the International Court of Justice at The Hague.
Belize was the site of several Mayan city-states until their decline at the end of the first millennium A.D. The British and Spanish disputed the region in the 17th and 18th centuries; it formally became the colony of British Honduras in 1854. Belize did not become independent until 1981. Disputes over the territory between the UK and Guatemala delayed the country’s independence.
- Belize is the only country in Central America where English is the official language.
- The Belize Barrier Reef (199 miles) is the longest in the western hemisphere and the second longest in the world next to the Great Barrier Reef on the Australian coastline.
- Sixty percent of Belize’s land mass is made up of forest, making them a part of the Mesoamerican Biological Corridor, which stretches from Southern Mexico to Panama.
- Belizean cuisine is inspired by British, Mexican, and Western Caribbean cooking, while a zest of coconut milk or fried plantains provide that tropical taste.
- The largest sports event that takes place every year in Belize is the Holy Saturday Cross Country Cycling Classic which offers nationals and tourists alike an opportunity to see their beautiful country-side in action-packed excitement.
- Folklore is a common interest in the citizens of Belize. A mythical creature, Tata Duende, is said to walk the forests, protecting the animals and jungles of Belize. It is said that you can feel his presence once entering the forest.
- The national bird of Belize is the Keel Billed Toucan, it bares a resemblance to Kellogg’s “Toucan Sam,” with its canoe-shaped bill and brightly colored feathers.
- It is believed that Belize was the heart of Mayan civilization during the classic period. Thousands of Mayan ruins are scattered among the forests, but only a handful have been found.
- The largest cave system in Central America can be found along the Chiquibul River in the Maya Mountains, which was used by the Mayans as a place to offer sacrifices to the “gods of death.”
- Built in 1922, the Belize City Swing Bridge has the honor of being the only functioning manually operated swing bridge in the world.
- Area - 8,867 square miles (Belize is slightly smaller than Massachusetts.)
- Population - 307,899 (July 2010 est.)
- Capital - Belmopan
- Independence Day - Sept. 21 (1981)
- Languages - English is the official language of Belize, and is spoken by 3.9% of the population. Spanish is spoken by 46% of the population, Creole by 32.9%, Mayan dialects by 8.9% Garifuna (Carib) 3.4%, German 3.3% and classified as “other” is 1.4% (2000 census)
- Religion - Belize’s population is 49.6% Roman Catholic, 27% Protestant, the rest of the population are either categorized as “other” or “none.”
- Currency - Belizean Dollars (BZD) / 1.98 Belizean Dollars = $1 USD
(Oct. 2010 est.)
- Unemployment - 8.1% (2008 est.)
- Literacy rate - Total population: 76.9% | Male: 76.7% | Female: 77.1%
(Defined: People age 15 and older who can read and write) (2000 est.)
By age (2010 est.)
0-14 years: 37.9% (male 59,462 / female 57,117)
15-64 years: 58.6% (male 91,298 / female 89,170)
65 years and over: 3.5% (male 5,185 / female 5,667)
Median age (2010 est.)
Total: 20.7 years
Male: 20.5 years
Female: 20.9 years
Infant mortality (2010 est.)
Total: 23.07 deaths / 1,000 live births
Male: 26 deaths / 1,000 live births
Female: 19.99 deaths / 1,000 live births
Life expectancy (2010 est.)
Total: 68.2 years
Male: 66.44 years
Female: 70.05 years