BTL & Restore Belize brings Messengers of Hope Print E-mail
( 2 Votes )
Written by Shane D. Williams   
Thursday, 31 May 2012 00:00

Hon. Patrick Faber and Councillor Roger Espejo along with students listening to motivational speakersOn Thursday, May 24, over six hundred students from across Belize City gathered inside the Queen’s Room of the Princess Hotel and Casino to listen to the testimonies of four foreigners that overcame great adversities and are now living successful lives. BTL and Restore Belize collaborated to host a motivational rally featuring Roy Juarez Jr., Pamela S. Perkins, Consuelo Castillo Kickbusch and Bert Oliva.

Juarez and Perkins did not have much time to share their stories but they took the little they had to share one message. The message is that everyone has the power to chart their own destiny and reach for their own success. One must not allow anyone to define their lives for them. Instead, one is to forgive those who wrong them and rise above the hate. Juarez grew up in an abusive home in which his father regularly hit his mom. She eventually left him for another man but later abandoned her children as well. Roy Juarez, Jr., was fourteen-years-old when his mother left him and his two younger siblings homeless. He raised them by himself until he was able to find a home for them. He then spent two-and-a-half years sleeping in anyone’s home that would give him lodging. With all that being thrown at him, Juarez managed to put himself through school and graduated from Hardin Simmons University. Today, he is the President and Founder of America’s Business Leaders, a human development company. Juarez shares his story at every opportunity he gets to encourage people to keep their heads up. Perkins is a specialist in “Transformative” and Professional Communication Services. She developed the Communication Staircase Model ,which has been used in workshops to develop people’s understanding of communication as an art and science.  She is the author of the highly acclaimed book entitled “The Art and Science of Communication: Tools for Effective Communication in the Workplace.”

Consuelo Castillo Kickbusch had time to complete her full presentation. She had injured herself while in Belize but refused to leave the country without delivering her message to the youths. Kickbusch is an extremely popular motivational speaker that has worked with over a million children and their parents across the United States through the Educational Achievement Services Incorporated, a company she founded in 1994. She has delivered her powerful messages to hundreds of schools, corporations and government institutions in numerous countries. Kickbusch had a really tough childhood. She grew up in Laredo, Texas, which is next to the Mexican border. Her family was extremely poor and she faced discrimination all her life because of that social condition. She was abused by many in her life. Though she struggled with literacy early, Kickbusch dedicated herself to learning. Her hard work granted her the opportunity to attend quality schools. She left her ailing mother to attend and graduate from Hardin Simmons University, after which she joined the United States Army. She became the highest-ranking Hispanic woman in the Combat Support Field of the U.S. and had an opportunity to land an even more prestigious position in the army but she decided to retire. Her retirement was based on her desire to fulfill her mother’s dying wish. Her mother wanted her to become a community leader and help others to improve their lives. Consuelo Castillo Kickbusch, the poor girl that was considered to be illiterate, is today a self-made millionaire respected by many of the most powerful people on earth. Many were inspired by Kickbusch’s testimony.  A few students even stepped forward before their peers and dedicated themselves to making a difference in their community.

Bert Oliva was the final speaker. He migrated from Cuba to the United States when he was just eleven months old and grew up in the Little Havana areas of Miami. Instead of partaking in illicit activities like his friends, he grew up responsibly and took a job at Xerox in his early twenties. He specializes in growing large corporations by focusing on the human potential. He believes in mind over matter. On Thursday,  he invited a young man to the front of the room and challenged him to eat fire in front of his peers. He explained to the youngster that he can do it if he truly believed. Oliva lit a flint and pushed it down his throat. He then pumped up the youth by giving him a couple instructions. At the instructions of Oliva, the young man looked at the lighted flint and laughed at it. He then said, “Mama, I’m hungry!” and devoured the flame. The demonstration was one of Oliva’s famous “breakthroughs”. He uses similar demonstrations such as walking barefoot on glass and lying on a bed of nails as metaphors in his presentations to clients. They show that all challenges and obstacles can be passed if one strives towards their full potential.   
Similar rallies were held in San Pedro and in the Cayo District. Over 4,000 students attended.