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Belize is a small country located in Central America along the coast of the Caribbean Sea. The average salary is only about $9000 Canadian and an education is hard to obtain. This is due to the dispersed geographic living situation and a lack of available transportation to schools. Earlier this year, SOUTHLAND donated a bus to Providence High School in Belize with the help of Chris Llewellyn, our Divisional Maintenance Manager, and his friend Marion. Marion works through her church to find buses that are suitable and her nephew Tim, along with a few friends, make the long drive to Belize. Due to the high cost of fuel in the country the school requested a flat nose bus with a 5.9L diesel engine. A bus fitting their requirements was selected and driven to Saskatchewan by Tim for minor repairs before making the 95 hour journey to its new home. On March 7, 2015 the bus departed with beds and a kitchen installed so the men venturing south could make the 10 day trip. Once crossing the border into Belize the bus made a few extra stops at an elementary school, a high school, and a college to deliver school supplies, books, and encyclopedias that had been packed onto the bus. Upon arrival at Providence High School on March 17, 2015 the principal was told by a teacher “Ms, the new bus is here. What a sight. It was lovely to behold. We are grateful to Tim.”  All of the children and staff at the school were elated to see their new bus had arrived, as they would not have been able to afford one otherwise. A once unusable bus was given a new life and provided the opportunity for many Belizean children to receive an education. Some of these children have to ride the bus for over an hour, which would be an unattainable journey without this bus. SOUTHLAND takes great pride in being a part of initiatives such as this, and looks forward to the next opportunity.

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