BELIZE CITY, Thurs. Mar. 9, 2023
This week, Mayor Bernard Wagner and the Belize City Council are hosting Mayor Jason Perez and other delegates from Belize City’s newest sister city, Angleton, Texas. The official sister city agreement was inked when Mayor Wagner and a group from Belize City visited the City of Angleton in October 2022. Similar to the Belize City delegation, Angleton’s delegation includes members representing the local city council as well as sectors including business, education, healthcare, and tourism, among others. Through the signed memorandum of understanding, both cities have pledged to collaborate in an effort to promote exchange in areas such as technology, art, disaster risk management, education, sports, administration, public health and commerce.
According to Mayor Perez, he was amazed by how much the two cities have in common when considering the threats these coastal cities face and the goals they want to accomplish. One area where Mayor Wagner is ready to hit the ground running is student exchange. His objective is to implement a program that offers the opportunity for Belize City students to participate in the Angleton High School’s CTE Program which concentrates on career and technical education. With the CTE Program, students acquire competitive academic and technical abilities that prepare them for certification in a variety of industries. Welding, cosmetology, culinary arts, business management, agriculture, law, communications and engineering are among the CTE career pathways.
When discussing the potential student exchange, Mayor Wagner told the Amandala, “As we continue to sow seeds and nurture the sister city relationship and ensure that the seeds we sow bear fruits that benefit both cities, we must seek to reap those low hanging fruits, and the student exchange program is one such harvest. If we could do just one student exchange within this year where one of our students is given the opportunity to attend Angleton’s CTE Program and one student from Angleton is able to access our learning program here in the city, that would be the start of many returns.”
On this week-long visit, Mayor Perez and his team have been able to experience Belizean culture, have had the opportunity to meet Prime Minister Hon. John Briceño, and have visited an array of locations in Belize City to gain a deeper understanding of what the city has to offer. According to both Mayors, they are determined to build on this sister city relationship to ensure it goes beyond ink on paper.