The second Inspiration Telethon hosted by the Special Envoy for Women and Children, and Care Belize has exceeded its half million-dollar target.
The telethon, which was held last Saturday at the Bliss Center for Performing Arts, totalled $514,132.85 in pledges and donations in just ten hours.
The largest donations came courtesy of the Belize Social Security Board, which presented the second installment of $50,000 from its pledge of $150,000 to be paid over three years.
The second largest came courtesy of businessman Mr. Jack Chawla, who moments before the telethon’s end, presented a blank cheque to be made out for whatever was needed to meet the target. His donation amounted to $92,015.97
Belize Natural Energy Charitable Trust and the Florida Caribbean Cruise Association each presented $50,000. In addition to the corporate donors, there were many touching moments as children, several of whom have disabilities, brought their piggy banks filled with their life savings to contribute to the cause.
The event was broadcast live countrywide on all local television stations and included live performances by local artists and educational videos about children with disabilities. There were also guest phone operators throughout the day receiving donations, including Prime Minister Dean Barrow and Belize City Mayor, Darrell Bradley.
Construction for the Inspiration Center, a facility that will deliver specialized care to children with various forms of disabilities, is ongoing at 1.5 mile on the George Price Highway.
The center is estimated to cost a total of $3 million, of which $1 million was raised in the first Inspiration Telethon on June 30th, 2012.
The funds raised this year will be used primarily to purchase specialized equipment to provide physical and occupational therapy, medical care, recreational activities and other services catered to the needs of children with disabilities.
The center will also serve as a community center with after-school classes for disadvantaged children from the surrounding communities.
The first telethon raised, $1,093,368.66.
The Belize Social Security Board donated it’s first installment in its $150,000 pledge to the Inspiration Center to be paid over three years; Belize Telemedia Limited committed to $60,000, while Fyffes and Belize Sugar Industries donated $50,000 each.
The Ministry of Human Development pledged more than $250,000 and the Taiwanese Embassytrumped them all with a donation of $400,000.