April 2023 Vol 99

The Consulate of Belize in Florida
Monthly Newsletter
#rememberitsgoodtobebelizean #thewaitisover

Honorary Consul's Monthly Message

Welcome to the April Newsletter!

"April hath put a spirit of youth in everything.” (William Shakespeare)

This month marked the beginning of so many beautiful things, spring, and the crescendo of all the Easter celebrations.


For Belizeans living in colder climates, it’s a joy to see the first signs of spring with the flowers blooming and the sun shining a bit brighter and warmer. 

For those who spent their Easter holidays at the cayes or in the interior of Belize, basking in the sun after a good swim in the crystal turquoise waters of the Caribbean Sea or the crisp cool river winding through Belize’s lush rain forest, offering a refreshing respite on a hot day, life can’t get better.

We hope that you all came back renewed and refreshed from your Easter break. Is there a spring in your step?


The Consulate would like to take this opportunity to wish all of the wonderful mothers a Happy Mother's Day! It is said that raising a child takes a village, so whether you are a biological mother, adoptive mother, aunt, or anyone who has played the role of a mother in a child's life, we celebrate you and all that you do.


And in honor of International Earth Day, we are sharing with you some photo shots that I took of Belize’s stunning sunsets and sunrises as well as the rich flora and fauna which abound, while I was at the caye over the Easter holidays. We hope that you enjoy. Isn’t Belize the most beautiful place in the world? Let us continue to treat her with lots of tender loving care (TLC)!


Unfortunately, South Floridians spent a few days under the weather after the skies opened to torrential rains causing havoc with gas shortages and flooding, forcing the Fort Lauderdale International Airport to shut down for two days.


The Jewel had some significant achievements this month. The Government of Belize hosted the President of Taiwan, Tsai Ing-wen in a historical visit. The visit was part of a 10-day mission to strengthen bilateral ties with Belize and Guatemala. President Tsai expressed her gratitude for Belize's formal recognition of Taiwan as a sovereign and independent country. Presently, 13 countries across the world are a part of this recognition.


The Prime Minister of Belize, the Honorable John Briceño, also listed a number of Taiwan-funded development projects, such as farming programs and funds to build critical infrastructure such as hospitals. This visit marked an important step in the relations between Taiwan and Belize, and we are optimistic that it will lead to increased positive developments in the future.


During her visit to Taiwan, H.E. Mrs. Briceño attended The Women’s Empowerment exhibition, where she gave a welcoming speech and thanked Taiwan for their continued support.

And in Belize, Mrs. Briceño met with the First Lady of Mexico, Dra. Beatriz Gutìerrez Müeller, who also made a historical visit to Belize, donating a book scanner to aid in the preservation of books and documents containing valuable historic information about Belize.

This month, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, as President Pro Tempore of SICA, is hosting the XIV Forum Dialogue and Cooperation between the Republic of Korea and SICA. Furthermore, the Ministry signed a cooperation framework agreement with Taiwan, which will serve to establish additional cooperation programs in a variety of areas.

The GOB Ministries have also been actively pursuing projects to improve infrastructure and promote sustainable practices. In addition to the Ministry of Infrastructure Development upgrading streets in Hattieville, the Ministry of Agriculture has recently signed a memorandum of understanding for a climate resilient and sustainable agriculture project.

And Hon. Michel Chebat, Minister of Public Utilities, Energy, Logistics and E-governance shared an innovative initiative for Belize's digital transformation with The Digital Spotlight Podcast.This initiative will transform the way the Government of Belize does business with us in a positive way.

Furthermore, the Blue Economy CEO, Kennedy Carrillo has met with Manatee conservationists to discuss plans for Belize’s first-ever marine animals rescue and rehabilitation center. Please read about it in the “Movers and Shakers” section of the newsletter.

Under “Tidbits” you can check out the latest Boom Forum hosted by the Belize Tourism Board, which provided valuable insights into the growth of Belize as a leading tourism destination in the Caribbean, as well as a comprehensive travel guide for Belize City, shared by thetravel.com, offering locals and tourists alike a unique insight into this beautiful port city.

On April 1st, the Immigration Department introduced the new fees for e-passport renewal services. Pertaining to the Consulate of Belize in Florida, the changes in prices will come into effect on May 1st. For further information, please be sure to check the "House Keeping Business" section in this edition, where the updated prices have been posted.

Please be sure to read all about the "Around the World Embassy Tour" under the Ambassador of Belize, H.E. Lynn Young’s section of this edition. It will be a gastronomical experience with cuisine from different cultures including Belize. Be sure to participate if you are in the D.C. area on Saturday, May 6th, from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. 

And in our Star of the Month Section, we featured a special story about two brothers who are passionate about serving and giving back to their community. They have made an impact on the lives of people in both Belize and the United States. We hope you check it out and feel inspired! #Belizeansdogreatthingswhereevertheygo

Did you try your hand at making the hot cross buns recipe we posted last month to celebrate Easter? I certainly had my delightful fill and the highlight was enjoying another Belizean favorite, fresh whole snapper fried in coconut oil, along with johnny cakes and fried beans (fried in coconut oil) with habanero "peppa saaus” on the side!

In this edition, make sure not to miss the delicious recipes chosen for you this month. Under the "Recipe of the Month", you will find a hearty Cow Foot Soup recipe. Have you heard about the worldwide craze surrounding the benefits of bone broth? Well, this soup contains some of the same benefits since it’s packed with collagen and other tasty and nutritious ingredients.

And for a delicious treat, check out the "Street Food Series" section, where you’ll find the recipe for sweet and tangy tamarind balls! 


Thank you for reading this newsletter. Enjoy and share with your family and friends!


And remember, it is good to be Belizean!

#rememberitsgoodtobebelizean #thewaitisover #staysafe

Warm wishes,

Janine Sylvestre
Hon. Consul of Belize in Florida 
Trade Representative of Belize in Florida

In Honor of Earth Day

Photos Taken by the Honorary Consul, Ms. Janine Sylvestre

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The Prime Minister of Belize, the Honorable John Briceño, Addresses Anti-Inflation and Food Security Summit

Аt thе іnvіtаtіоn оf Рrеѕіdеnt оf Мехісо Аndréѕ Маnuеl Lóреz Оbrаdоr, Рrіmе Міnіѕtеr Јоhn Вrісеñо аddrеѕѕеd thе Аntі-Іnflаtіоn аnd Fооd Ѕесurіtу Ѕummіt, hеld bу а nеwlу-fоrmеd Аlіаnzа dе Раíѕеѕ dе Аmérіса Lаtіnа у еl Саrіbе Соntrа lа Іnflасіón (Аllіаnсе оf Nаtіоnѕ оf Lаtіn Аmеrіса аnd thе Саrіbbеаn tо Fіght Іnflаtіоn), vіrtuаllу frоm hіѕ Веlіzе Сіtу оffісе оn Wеdnеѕdау. Read More

Prime Minister, Hon. John Briceño to Taiwan: ‘Our House is Your House’

My Administration is most pleased to welcome to Belize , President of Republic of China - Taiwan H. E. Dr. Tsai Ing-Wen. Taiwan has been a longstanding bilateral partner of Belize. We mutually support each country's right to self-determination.

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Micro, Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises #MSMEs

I am proud to congratulate Vanessa Melendez - entrepreneur and CEO of EV4 Pharmaceuticals Limited. The company launched EV4 Pharma - its online app that gives clients real-time access to the business inventory facilitating business transactions nationally. Read More

Courtesy Visit

“I had a courtesy visit with the #UNDP Regional Director for the Bureau of Latin America and the

Caribbean Mrs. Linda Maguire. We welcome her on her visit to Belize and look forward to our continued good relations with that UN organization.”

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Belize and Mexico

I had the honor of greeting the First Lady of Mexico Dra. Beatriz Gutìerrez Müeller. On behalf of our Government, I accepted a book scanner to assist us in recording and preserving our history. Training for the use of the scanner will also be provided as well as as an array of books. We look forward to many more partnerships with Mexico.

Read More

H.E. Mrs. Rossana Briceño's Remarks at Women Empowerment Exhibition

Today, I had the pleasure of addressing President Tsai, ROC (Taiwan) , while giving the welcome remarks at the Women Empowerment Exhibition. We showcased the achievements of the Economic Empowerment of Women in Belize in the Post Pandemic Era project. Belize will always be grateful to The Republic of China (Taiwan) for their continued support and partnership.

Special Olympics Belize Family Health Forum

"My entire career as an educator has principally focused on inclusive education. Today, attending the Special Olympics Belize Family Health Forum gave me an opportunity to join my two commitments - education and inclusion of persons with special needs". Read More

Don't Tax my Femininity

As of April 1st, sanitary items should NOW cost 35.5% less. Here are some examples of the types and their projected costs.

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XIV Forum of Dialogue and Cooperation between the Republic of Korea and SICA.

As the Presidency Pro-tempore of the Central American Integration System (SICA), the Government of Belize, through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, is hosting the XIV Forum of Dialogue and Cooperation between the Republic of Korea and SICA. The forum explores the strengthening of cooperation in areas of digital transformation, agriculture, health, education and disaster risk management. Read More

CEO of Immigration Outlines Rationale for Increase in Belizean Passport Prices

Ассоrdіng tо Міddlеtоn, thе іnсrеаѕе іn раѕѕроrt рrісеѕ іѕ mоrе іn lіnе wіth rеgіоnаl аnd glоbаl ѕtаndаrdѕ fоr ѕіmіlаr dосumеntѕ. Аddіtіоnаllу, thе nеw wоrld-сlаѕѕ Е-раѕѕроrt hаѕ аn іntrіnѕіс hіghеr соѕt duе tо іtѕ mоdеrn tесhnоlоgу аnd ѕесurіtу fеаturеѕ. Read More

Governments of Belize and Taiwan Sign Technical Cooperation Framework Agreement

This will serve to establish further cooperation programs between Belize and Taiwan in areas such as agriculture, forestry, fisheries, technology, education, climate change, youth and women, health, tourism and other areas of mutual consent. Read More

The Women Economic Empowerment Exhibition

President Tsai completed her visit at the Exhibition of Achievements of the Women Economic Empowerment Project. This project has supported Belize’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. It provides MSME support and social inclusion and helps to make women more independent while encouraging their development of their creativity. Read More


On July 4th, CARICOM will mark its 50th anniversary. Belize joined CARICOM on May 1, 1974, and has had positive trade balances for the last six years. The CARICOM single market economy includes 14 member states and 14 million people. Duty-free status is one of the benefits enjoyed by member countries. Read More

Consulate of Belize in Florida

"House Keeping Business"

New Epic System is Now Officially Up and Running!

All those who were on our waiting list for passport renewals have completed their appointments. Our calendar is filling up fast so please call as soon as you can to schedule an appointment.

Contact Information:




[email protected]rward to hearing from you!

Learn More

Belizean Diaspora in the USA

Belize Business Directory

USA Database

Here at the Consulate, we continue to work diligently in updating our database by calling members of the Belizean Diaspora and asking for their most recent contact information. This is to ensure we are able to share upcoming events, new services, and business opportunities in a timely manner. We appreciate your cooperation and support in sharing your contact information. As always, we welcome your feedback and suggestions.

Market your Business in our Consulate's Website

The Consulate's Belize Business Directory is new and improved!

The Directory's objective is to promote Belizean businesses in the US and in Belize. If you own a business or know of a Belizean who does and would like to publish it on our website, please send us an email with your contact information so that we can add it to our Belizean Business Directory.

Visit our Website

Belize Embassy, Mission and Consulates

Contact Information

Register with us as a Belizean in Florida and keep up to date on all news and events happening in Florida and Belize!

The information you provide is strictly confidential and used for database purposes only. 

Click Here to Register

Tourism Tidbits

The BOOM Forum is Back!

A series of presentations under the theme "A Dip into the Future." Representatives from BTB's partner agencies, The Zimmerman Agency, Development Counselors International, and Finn Partners, dove into topics from sustainability, ecotourism, and marketing strategies for this year's B.O.O.M. Forum.

Read More

Trade and Investment Tidbits

The Second Belize Investment Summit Coming Soon

Read More

Mark your calendars! It's coming soon... our 2nd Belize Investment Summit is coming.

Stay alert and look out for our posts. Get in touch with our team at BELTRAIDE and the Ministry of Investment to find out how you can participate.

Read More

Cultural Tidbits

Woman Farmer of the Year

Each year, the Ministry of Agriculture names a Woman Farmer of the Year to complement its new senior and junior winners. This year's Woman Farmer of the Year, fifty-year-old Esmeralda Stanley, showed us that she is not only deserving of the recognition, but that she is certainly self-sufficientRead More

Earth Day is a yearly event celebrated on April 22 to show support for environmental protection. It began on April 22, 1970, and has since grown to include a diverse range of events coordinated globally by EARTHDAY.ORG (formerly Earth Day Network), with 1 billion people participating in over 193 countries. Invest in our Planet is the official theme for 2023.

Raymond and Kenneth Peters

This edition’s Stars of the Month are a pair of brothers who stand as a true example of bravery and selflessness. Raymond and Kenneth Peters are both retired U.S. combat veterans. Their journey began in Southside Belize, on East Canal Street. They were raised in a loving family of five children by their parents, Selvyn and Jean Peters. The brothers attended St. John's Primary School and afterwards St. Michael's College. As children, they joined the Boy Scout Association of Belize, where they began showing signs of their future bravery and dedication to serving others.

Growing up, their father, Mr. Selvyn Peters, always tried to instill in his children the value of giving back to the community. Mr. Peters served in the Belize Defense Force, which influenced all four of his sons and contributed to their desire to join the army. Kenneth recalls his father telling him, "Always remember that we need to give back." This inspired the brothers to join the army so they could give back to their community.

After being inspired by family members who had settled in the United States, Raymond decided to move to New York City in search of a better life and more opportunities. He arrived in October of 1965 and after settling in for just a couple of months, he made the life changing decision of joining the military that same year. Raymond was drafted to serve in the Vietnam War, one of the most well-known conflicts in American history. He served for two years before being injured and forced to return home in April 1967.

Raymond was awarded The Purple Heart medal. An award given to service members who have been injured or killed as a result of enemy action while serving in the U.S. military. A Purple Heart is a solemn distinction and means a service member has greatly sacrificed themselves or paid the ultimate price while on duty.

Kenneth's journey to the United States began in July of 1971, when he arrived in New York. Five years later, in January of 1974, he made the decision to join the U.S. Army, where he proudly served for an impressive 15 years. During that time, Kenneth took part in two tumultuous conflicts - the Vietnam War and the Gulf War. Having served in both the Army and the Navy, Kenneth is a distinguished veteran whose selfless service to his country is truly admirable.

Raymond and Kenneth also had two brothers, Arthur and Michael, who served in the United States army. They fought in the Vietnam and Korea wars, respectively. Unfortunately, Arthur and Michael both passed away, but Kenneth and Raymond agree that they all wanted to join the army to give back to the country that had given them so much.

Kenneth currently works as a Veterans Service Officer, where he is able to assist veterans in the community. Veterans are an important part of our community, and it is critical that they receive the assistance and support they deserve. His knowledge and compassion when assisting veterans is another way Kenneth has found to give back to the people around him.

Raymond is now retired and has two children. Nonetheless, he finds ways to contribute to the community. His wife is a pastor, and they had a church that they had to close due to covid. This did not deter them, and they remain very active in the community by providing services via Zoom.

The Peters brothers enjoy visiting Belize whenever they can. They say Belize brings them joy, and they enjoy exploring the country and eating the delicious food. They both inherited their mother's charitable nature, and they enjoy contributing to the well-being of Belizeans. This is why they like contributing to the feeding program of St. John's Church.


Thank you for your service and for giving back to Belize!

We are proud to call you our Stars of the Month!

Landmark of the Month

Altun Ha Ruins

Altun Ha was occupied for many centuries, from about 900 B.C. to A.D. 1000. Most of the information on Altun Ha comes from the Classic Period from about A.D. 400 to A.D. 900, when the city was at its largest.

Belizeanism of the Month

Pipple Never Stone Empty Mango Tree

Meaning: To be criticized implies the possession of talent.

  • Hon. Michel Chebat, Minister of Public Utilities, Energy, Logistics and E-governance Talks About Belize's Digital Transformation with The Digital Spotlight Podcast Read More

  • Belize Celebrates World Health Day, Health Minister says Healthcare in Belize has Improved Read More

  • Tourism Minister Outlines Industry’s Contribution to Security and Community Development Read More

  • Ministries of Blue Economy & Economic Development to Hold Public Consultations to Disclose ‘Promoting Sustainable Growth in the Blue Economy’ Project Read More

  • Ministry of Infrastructure Development Upgrades Streets in Hattieville, Belize District Read More

  • Belize Holds Central American Commission for Environment and Development (CCAD) Council of Ministers Meeting Read More

  • CARICOM Heads of Government Declare ‘War on Guns,’ Will Treat Crime as Public Health Issue Following Regional Anti-Crime Summit Read More

  • Senator Bevinton Cal Represents Belize at 4th Meeting of World Bank Global Young MP Initiative Read More

  • U.S. Ambassador and Council of Churches Discuss Social Issues Read More

  • United Nations House was Inaugurated in Belmopan Read More

  • Belize Reaffirms Ties with Taipei as Taiwanese President Visits Read More

  • Belize Imposes Stricter Immigration Requirements for Jamaicans and Haitians Read More

  • President Tsai Handed Over 5,000 Laptops to Support Vulnerable Groups Such as Women and Children in Rural Areas. Read More
  • Sebastian Coe, World Athletics President, Impressed by Belize’s Demetrie Meyers: “Terrific Piece of Running” Read More

  • Celebrate the Grand Opening of Cayo Artisanal Market Read More

  • International Gospel Artist Sinach Headlines Two-Day Holy Week Revival Concert in Belize City Read More

  • Belize Women’s National Team is 170 in FIFA World Women’s Ranking Read More

  • Belize Olympic and Commonwealth Games Association Joins World in Celebrating the International Day of Sport for Development and Peace Read More

  • Cabinet approves agreement on fisheries, climate change plans and water management Read More

  • Вluе Есоnоmу СЕО Кеnnеdу Саrrіllо Mееtѕ Mаnаtее Cоnѕеrvаtіоnіѕt tо Dіѕсuѕѕ Plаnѕ fоr Веlіzе’ѕ Fіrѕt-Evеr Mаrіnе Anіmаlѕ Rеѕсuе аnd Rеhаbіlіtаtіоn Cеntеr Read More

  • The Belize Tapir Project Thanks Family for Caring for Injured Tapir Read More

  • Ministry of Agriculture, BAHA and Stakeholders Sign MoU for Climate Resilient and Sustainable Agriculture Project Read More

  • Belize Launches Strategy for Reef Resilience Read More

  • Scientists Use NASA Satellite Data to Determine Belize Coral Reef Risk Read More

  • Belize Exports over 7,500 Head of Cattle to Guatemala, Mexico Valued at over $10 Million in First Quarter of 2023 Read More

  • Economy Grew by More than 10 Percent in the Last Quarter of 2022 Read More

  • More Reforms to Laws Addressing Money Laundering, Terrorism Prevention Read More

  • Development Finance Corporation (DFC) Receives Financing from Taiwan for Business Support Read More

  • Taiwan Coffee and Cacao Trade Mission to Belize Read More

  • BELTRAIDE and UND Launch Third Digital Connect Center in Dangriga Read More

  • New Marine Rescue and Educational Center to be built in Gales Point Read More

  • Ruth Shoman Elected President of Teachers’ Union following Convention in Orange Walk Town Read More

  • BBC News States "Belize Compares Favourably for Media Freedom with Neighbouring Countries". Read More

  • Coast Guard Team Rescues Seven in Corozal Bay Read More

  • 6 Reasons You Should Add This Central American Country To Your Travel Plans This Year Read More

  • The Founders of a Cult Fashion Brand Designed THIS Stylish Resort in Belize Read More

  • The Three Finest Luxury Hotels in Belize Read More

  • 8 Things To Do In Belize City: Complete Guide To This Stunning Port City Read More

Cow Foot Soup


  • 2 teaspoons vegetable oil
  • 1 cup diced onions
  • 6 sprigs thyme, divided
  • 2 pounds cow heel, coarsely chopped
  • Salt, to taste
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 5 cups water, plus more as needed
  • 1 cube chicken bouillon
  • 1/2 cup yellow split peas
  • 6 to 8 okra, halved crosswise
  • 2 medium carrots, peeled and cut into 1-inch rounds
  • 12 small flour dumplings


Tamarind Balls


  • A box of fresh tamarind pods or use 20 pods
  • 1 tablespoon of rum essence optional
  • ¼ cup of coconut sugar or raw cane sugar
  • Additional sugar for dusting 
Full Recipe
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March 2022, VOL. 98 Read More
February 2023, VOL. 97 Read More
January 2023, VOL. 96. Read More
December 2022, VOL. 95 Read More
November 2022, VOL. 94 Read More
October 2022, VOL. 93 Read More
September 2022, VOL. 92. Read More
August 2022, VOL. 91. Read More
July 2022, VOL. 90 Read More
June 2022, VOL. 89 Read More
May 2022, VOL. 88 Read More
April 2022, VOL. 87 Read More

Prime Minister Briceño's Latest Statement on the ICJ

On September 26, as Prime Minister Briceno addressed the Protocolary Session of the (OAS), he reiterated the important role the organization has played in not only for the territorial dispute between Guatemala and Belize but in relations among all Member States.

I emphasized our hope for a peaceful solution to the Guatemala Belize matter currently at the ICJ, where Belize is allowed to maintain the integrity of all its borders.

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Belize Submits Its Counter-Memorial to the ICJ Regarding the Guatemalan Claim

On June 3rd during the sitting of the House of Representatives, Prime Minister John Briceño announced that Belize delivered its counter-memorial to the Registrar of the International Court of Justice in The Hague. Belize’s counter-memorial makes a robust defence of Belize’s sovereignty over its entire territory including islands and the pertaining maritime areas under international law. Following the timetable announced by the Court, which was amended as a result of the pandemic, Guatemala submitted its memorial on December 8, 2020, and is due to submit its reply to Belize’s counter-memorial in December 2022. Belize will then have until June 2023 to submit its rejoinder, after which the Court will set a date for the oral hearings. Briceno says that the hearing is expected to possibly be held by 2024.
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Belize's International Team for the  ICJ
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Extension of Time Limits