One of our massive successes in capacity development and empowering youth is the two year programme established in partnership with the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) and the Government of Belize (GOBZ).
Having seen our ground breaking workshops in action at the VYBZING Forum in Saint Lucia, CDB approached YOURS to help them reach their goals to educate and inspire young people to take road safety action in Belize. These efforts were part of the Bank’s wider all-encompassing road safety project, which focuses on improving Belize’s infrastructure, emergency response, enforcement and education.
YOURS realized this mission by establishing a strong partnership with the government, universities, youth groups and media and to train 34 young facilitators over two years. We trained two cohorts, one in 2014 - one in 2015, and took young leaders from Belize through the full YOURS interactive workshop experience. These facilitators successfully trained a futher 2000+ youth in road safety by the end of 2015.
Operations Officer - Caribbean Development Bank
Our signature workshops did not become successful or award-winning over night. Every single Training of Facilitators, Youth and Road Safety Workshop or Stand-Alone session requires dilligent work behind the scenes to ensure we have the best partners on board offering the strongest support for our youth leaders.
In Belize, the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) was the initiator of the programme and approached YOURS to educate young people in Belize as part of the wider road safety project in the country. We partnered with the Government of Belize, which consisted of several departmental collaboration; Ministry of Finance and Economic Development, Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports, the Project Management Unit and the Statistical Institute of Belize. Because of the close collaboration and the input of our local partners, YOURS could develop training materials matching the local needs and expectations.
Together with our local partners we installed a robust recruitment process and develop plans to realize the target of reaching 2,000+ youth across the country as agents of change and multipliers of road safety knowledge.
It's no secret that young people experience life differently to their parents and the older generations, so then why do so many workshops assume that young people want to sit through an old school style of learning? We've experienced it ourselves, sitting through hours of presentations, speech after speech and talk after talk. If we really want to engage with young people, we know this is not the way! Therefore YOURS is using a highly interactive and enagaging methodology while delivering workshops.
In Belize, we worked with our local partners to select the most approriate road safety topics relevant to the lives of young people but also reflective of the road safety situation in the country, based on official statistics. All topics are facilitated by our master trainers who bring their years of experience to make road safety topics accessible, engaging and fun.
The topics covered in the Belize programme included:
Since undergoing the YOURS training and organizing themselves as Belizean Youths for Road Safety (BYRS), our young facilitators have continued to make incredible strides for road safety in the country. Having reached all of their target of face-to-face workshops with 2000+ young people, BYRS have reached tens of thousands of young people throughout the country. Some highlights over the two years have included:
Not only have these young people become strong campaigners for road safety, they have also taken a seat on the National Road Safety Board in the country, created new road safety materials as well as delivered workshops across the whole country! But action is only as good as its impact, the Government of Belize representatives have reported that since the workshops, there have been less young people killed and injured on Belize's roads. For consecutive years, young people remained the biggest affected group in the country in terms of road crashes and injuries this has for the first time changed with youth affected reduced (Government of Belize, Road Safety Project Management Unit 2016 reports).