March was Women’s History Month, and the 8th was the 100th Annual International Women’s Day. The CMR hosted two related events, the presentation of the award for the Embassy-sponsored Belize Woman of the Year program and the monthly general meeting of the Belmopan International Women’s Group (BIWG).

I was excited because I got to be a greeter and usher for the Woman of the Year event, so I got to meet and seat all the nominees, the winner, a few friends from the diplomatic community, and some of the other impressive women in Belize, including the wife of the Belizean Prime Minister. During the ceremony the ambassador made a nice speech, which you can read here on the embassy web page: Belize Woman of the Year 2012

This was the third year that the embassy had hosted the ceremony. The previous year’s winner was an ordained minister and did a lot of work in prisons and with children. She was born a few weeks before the Category 5 hurricane that destroyed most of Belize City in 1961. She was also abandoned as a child and had a pretty rough life, as have many, if not most, Belizeans. But she’s done quite a bit to give back to her community, which is inspirational.

This year’s winner has been a teacher and administrator for over 20 years and also has a heart for children and single mothers and has made a real difference in her community.

I wasn’t able to attend it, but I heard that the BIWG meeting was also very moving. The Belizean Prime Minister’s wife was the guest speaker and shared her personal story about her current and ongoing struggle with breast cancer.

For more info on the BIWG, check out their website: Belmopan International Women’s Group