Plenty Belize is a registered Belizean NGO with its office in the village of Jacintoville, Toledo District, Belize. Founded in 1997, Plenty Belize has a history of working hand in hand with other local groups to address local needs in a sustainable manner. Plenty Belize has acted both as a service provider within projects spearheaded by other organizations and as a project manager. Plenty Belize manages projects in agriculture, school gardens, health, nutrition, solar energy, women’s development, micro-enterprise and education, in close liaison with local government and non-governmental agencies.
Plenty Belize operates independently as a sister organization to Plenty International, with similar values and purposes. Since 1990 Plenty International staff and volunteers have contributed financial, technical and material support to the work of Plenty Belize.
The Toledo District in southern Belize is home to indigenous Mopan and Kek’chi Maya (who comprise about 65% of the district’s 33,000 plus residents), Garifuna, Creole, Mestizo, and East Indian populations. Levels of education, health, literacy, infrastructure and income in this district are consistently at the bottom of national averages. With 79% of residents living below the poverty line, the Toledo District ranks among the poorest in the western hemisphere. With over 50 villages, the population is rurally based and relies greatly on subsistence slash and burn style agriculture. Malnutrition is a persistent problem in Toledo with 45% of children showing signs of growth retardation. Hunger is not a problem in Toledo, as there is always something available to eat, even if it does not provide balanced nutrition.
Infrastructure in Toledo is the lowest in the nation, with many about 16 villages having no access to the electricity grid, and many not having potable water or decent sanitation facilities.
The Toledo District is also blessed with an abundance of natural resources. With 165 – 190 inches of rainfall each year, the climate is perfect for the beautiful rainforest that covers our land. The Caribbean Sea / Gulf of Honduras lies off our coast, as we lie near the southernmost point of the second longest barrier reef in the world.
Areas of focus
- Sustainable development of energy, water, and food resources
- Sanitation, Nutrition, and Health Education
- Economic initiatives such as agro-business and micro-enterprise development
- Environmental Awareness and Adaptation to Global Climate Change
- Relevant Public Education
- Inclusion of Women, Youths, and Persons with Disabilities in the development of their communities and beyond
- Respect for the culture of the many indigenous peoples of the area.
Plenty Belize currently has an Executive Director/Programs Manager, and an Office and Accounts Manager; our Board is an active board assisting our work in many ways. We also have occasional local and international volunteers.
Executive Director/Programs Manager Mark Miller was born in the US but is now a permanent resident of Belize, living in the village of Jacintoville, about 8 miles outside of PG town. Mark holds a Masters Degree in Environmental Pollution Control, a Bachelor’s in Electrical Engineering, and formerly held a certificate in secondary education.
Office and Accounts Manager Randine Williams was born and raised and continues to live in the village of Jacintoville, Toledo. Randine earned her Associate degree from the University of Belize.
Board of Directors
- Chair Mr. Augustine Lara, Principal at Medina Bank Government School, Toledo District
- Vice Chair Mr. Francisco Cal, Retired Special Education Officer, Toledo District
- Treasurer Mr. Alberto Coleman, Finance Specialist at Treasury Department, Government of Belize, Toledo District
- Secretary Ms. Emely Ramirez, Preschool Teacher and Entrepreneur, Toledo District
- Mr. Jack Nightingale, Entrepreneur, Toledo District
- Mr. Victor Kuk, Extension Officer, Ministry of Agriculture, Toledo District
- Mr. Ignatius “Gomier” Longville, Owner of Gomier’s Health Food Restaurant
- Mr. Abib Palma, Entrepreneur and Agriculture Specialist
PO Box 72
Punta Gorda Town
(501) 664 – 5024