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The Belize Customs and Excise Department is identified as the country's largest source of revenue. It is responsible for providing around 53 percent of the total recurrent revenue and is also one of the nation's major border enforcement agency. It is also responsible for enforcing some thirty (30) Agency duties for other departments, which laws deal with a wide range of issues from moral to financial, and even protecting the environment. But today custom officers were out in full force in the Finca Solana Area in the Corozal District spreading holiday smiles. Victor Castillo was in the area and filed the following.

Screen_Shot_2013-12-11_at_7.58.25_PMVictor Castillo – Reporting

Corozal Custom officials were out in full force today but it wasn’t for their routine duties but one that provided much holiday cheer to over a hundred deserving kids at the Dreams Establishment located in the Finca Solana Area. Customs officer Raquel Waight told us more.

Raquel Waight – Custom Clerk 1.

“Today we are having a Christmas party for the disable children and we have invited 150 students from across the schools in Corozal District, it is our initiative as customs to decide to be giving back to the community and this is one of the ways we are giving back.  We have asked the business community for sponsorship along with the Broker’s Association; we have sponsors like A&R, German Vega and many more to mention that contributed towards the party and we have decided that since we just celebrated children with disability week last week we decided to cater for the children with disability being that they are the ones that are almost forgotten and that is our efforts now in a way to give back to the community and to show that Customs Department is not just all about taking and charging duties and taxes we are also here to do our community work here as public officers.”

Victor Castillo – Reporter

“We understand that this is the fourth year that you guys doing this program?”

Raquel Waight – Custom Clerk 1.

“Yes, this is the fourth year and we hope to continue this program with the help of the community as we said we hope to continue each year so it is a joy to see the smiles on all the faces especially the children with disability how they are so cheering but sometimes we tend to think that these children are not as normal as other children but when we have things like this we bring awareness also to show that these children are normal children and they want to enjoy themselves just like any normal children.”

We understand that in the Corozal District there are more than 150 children with special needs.

Raquel Waight – Custom Clerk 1.

“Ok what we do is that we have a process first we contact the school and then we look at all the schools that are in the Corozal area, we normally cater for 150 to 200 children so we try to divide evenly with all the schools within the Corozal area and we ask for the ones with disability.”

After a healthy lunch, the children were ready for the arrival of Santa clause who arrived with his little helper to distribute gifts to 150 children that were present today.

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