At its heart, Belize is a peaceful country, and Belizeans are a peaceful people. But the violence that has arisen in the last couple decades, especially in the cities, is a plague that, if left unchallenged, will devastate many more lives.
According to the United Nations, Belize currently
has the fifth highest murder rate in the
world, with 41.4 murders per 100,000 citizens. But numbers don’t tell the
story. The simple truth is that in Belize City children are growing up
witnessing their family members and neighbors murdered right in front of them.
The truth is children are growing up to be murderers themselves. But yet, audacious as it may seem, many
people strongly believe the solutions are within reach.
In February of this year, a team of parishioners from
St. Martin de Porres Catholic Church in Southside Belize City walked across the length of
the country. The Bishop’s Walk for Peace was their attempt to get people
talking and working together towards restoring peace in Belize. As evidenced by the
thousands of people who walked, helped, and were touched along the way, the
walkers accomplished what they set out to do: the Peace Movement has begun.
My name is Jeremy Ruzich, a photographer
and visual storyteller, and I was able to take part by documenting the entire
Walk for Peace and gathering stories of those involved. The imagery, stories,
and content have been captured. But now we need your help in bringing it
together into a finished multimedia documentary, distributing it across Belize
and beyond, and keeping the momentum of this movement going.
Your pledges to this campaign will fund
post-production and related costs (including professional editing and music
licensing), as well as promotion and distribution of the piece. There are, of course, a number of rewards available (at right) to help you decide your level of support. Whatever you choose to contribute is
greatly appreciated, but we urge you to make it now rather than later. This
Kickstarter campaign ends on July 17, and it is an all-or-nothing goal.
As I mentioned, The Bishop’s Walk
for Peace successfully began a movement of restoring peace in Belize. But it is
just the beginning. Please help us to spread the message of peace and bring
more and more people together in the movement.
Editing/post-production: 2,100. Music: 400. Publicity/distribution: 1,000. Kickstarter rewards and fees: 1,500.
Contact Jeremy with any questions: email@example.com
More information on The Bishop's Walk for Peace:
St. Martin de Porres Parish, Belize City
An Epic Walk For a Profound Problem, Channel 7 News
Walk for Peace in Belize, Jesuits Missouri Province
Risks and challenges
The main challenge of this project is striking a balance in the timeframe to completion. There is a sense of urgency to maintain the momentum of the peace movement in Belize. However, it is also important to ensure that the story is told as clearly and powerfully as possible, which will take deliberation, collaboration with other experienced individuals, and… time. While my team and I are committed to the completion of Peace Movement, the success of this Kickstarter campaign will help ensure a reasonable timeframe.
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