Thursday, October 22, 2009

National Unsung Heroes Recognized

A livestock farmer and a nurse have been chosen as this year’s local unsung heroes. A ceremony honoring Paul Bradley and Nurse Judith Cuellar-Krieg organized by First Caribbean International Bank was held this afternoon at the Belize Biltmore Plaza. Bradley and Craig were chosen from among 17 hopefuls that were nominated for doing much more than is expected of them in their respective communities. Rosanna Villanueva is the Local Coordinator for the Unsung Heroes programme in Belize.
Rosanna Villanueva: Local Coordinator, Unsung Heroes Programme in Belize
“When we receive nominations the local committee gets together for the selection process. The first thing that we try to do is contact the persons who nominate them to get more information, ask more questions and things like that. Then we start to look at the information contained in the nominations, what is the individual’s level of sacrifice? How long have they been doing the work in the community? How far their impact is on the community? From there we just narrow it down. Eventually we get an interview to them to get a feel of what they are doing and then we select a finalist. It is a wonderful program because it bring out people from little corners of the country who you might not normally hear about.”

Paul Bradley is a livestock farmer in Burrell Boom Village who has assisted farmers in the Belize River Valley Area in countless ways. He has secured grants from the government for the development of livestock programs. Judith Cuellar-Krieg or Nurse Judy, as she is more affectionately known, is a born Belizean who migrated to the states a young girl where she served as a Critical Care Registered Nurse. Nurse Judy came home presumably to relax but wound up providing Hopkins Village and villages in the surrounding area with much needed health care free of cost. Love News spoke to the heroes after the ceremony.

Paul Bradley: Livestock Farmer
“I have some of my friends here with me. We have been trying to form an association to help livestock farmers and other farmers in Belize River Valley to help themselves and to do something with their land. This will allow them to make a decent living. I did not expect anything like this to come out of the work that I have been doing. They say you cannot keep a quarrel on the ground and that is me; I always try to help, I do what I can and I am happy with everyday of my life and what I do.”

Judith Cuellar-Krieg: Nurse
“I was born and raised in Belize City. After that I did a couple of thing before migrating to the states where I met my husband and married and then became a nurse. He was ready to retire and I was ready to kind of relax a little bit myself and we thought that the south might be the place for us. We wanted some place quiet by the beach and that is where we found Hopkins and Hopkins found us. My mom was my mentor and she is the one that woke up in the middle of the night and took care of her patients and thought me nursing and the nursing that I do down in Hopkins. You do what comes naturally, my mom thought me that, my dad thought me that, the community surely needs it; they have accepted me so it is a group effort. It is not me being a hero but the whole. I alone cannot do it alone; it takes a whole village literally.”

Villanueva told us what is next for our Unsung Heroes.
Rosanna Villanueva: Local Coordinator, Unsung Heroes Programme in Belize

“We have had Belize win five years so we are hoping for another win again next year for either Nurse Judy or Mr. Bradley. Their names and their profiles have been submitted to our regional committee who will make a selection from all the territories in which FirstCaribbean operates and that will be announced in December. If any of them is chosen as the regional champion he or she will get US seven thousand five hundred dollars. If they are chosen as one of the runners up he or she will get US five thousand dollars. They will also be taken to Barbados for a wonderful ceremony in their honor.”

At today’s ceremony Bradley and Nurse Judy were presented with six hundred U-S dollars towards their projects and causes. (Re-printed from LoveFm News)

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