General / Weekend News

Punta Gorda Family helps raise fund to put young man through school

By Ingrid Fernandez, Staff Reporter 

A family from the United States opened a fundraising account on the popular website Go Fund Me, seeking pubic assistance to help a young man from Punta Gorda, Toledo attend college in Wisconsin USA. 

The story of Rodney Borland is one of resilience and courage that soon took the hearts of his friends. On the night of October 11, 2002 Borland was working in his parent’s grocery shop when a man, his face covered with a stocking, and armed entered and demanded money from the cash drawer. 

While attempting to retrieve the money, Borland was shot in the chest. His mother came to his aid and a nurse that was passing by at the moment provided first aid on him. The bullet that entered his chest broke two ribs, punctured his right lung and severed his spine. Borland would spend the next two years of his life from one medical procedure to the next to save his life. 

Borland spent almost eight months recovering at St. Mary’s Hospital in Wisconsin and later returned to southern Belize to continue his recovery. His life changed completely. The gunshot left him with restricted mobility and as a paraplegic and he had to use a voice amplifying device to speak. 

Amidst this misfortune and all the challenges it poured into Borland’s life, he never lost the zeal for this education. He passed the Primary School Exams (PSE) and attended the Toledo Community College (TCC) graduating with honors in 2008, with honors in physics, information technology and literature. 

Borland started a Bachelors Degree program at the University of Belize (UB) in Information Technology under a merit program scholarship, but was unable to finish due to a back surgery. 

While pursuing his education Borland met financial difficulties, but did not get discouraged. He found ways to make ends meet and worked fixing computers, as a taxi driver and as a video editor for the local news station. In 2014, he lost his mother, who he desribed as his biggest motivator, to diabetes-related complications. 

Even against these setbacks, Borland maintained his love for education. He applied and was accepted to the University of Wisconsin, USA. He is currently in his first semester of college and needs financial assistance to complete his education.

If you want to help Rodney Borland achieve his dream of completing his education, go to the following link where you will be directed on how to contribute. https://www.gofundme.com/helprodneyb

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