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Stann Creek Ecumenical College returns to prestigious Penn Relays; Inspired by dreams and support

Posted: Sunday, April 21, 2024. 11:40 am CST.

By Horace Palacio: Information from Caribbean Life reveals that Stann Creek Ecumenical College (SCEC) will represent Belize in the Penn Relays in Philadelphia for the fourth consecutive year. This marks a testament to their dedication and the power of their dreams. Head coach Gary Francisco is “thrilled” to give his athletes the chance to shine on the international stage.

“The Penn Relays hold significance for us far beyond the competition,” Francisco stated. “It’s about realizing dreams and proving that Belizean athletes can achieve greatness regardless of their circumstances.”

Francisco acknowledges the challenges his program faces, including limited resources and support. He envisions a future with better facilities, equipment, and coaching for the program and welcomes potential sponsors who share his vision. He also expressed deep gratitude to James Cordice and Team SVG International for their continued, unwavering support.

Assistant coach Olivett Louise Ramos echoed his sentiments, adding, “our athletes faced a challenging experience last year, yet they gave their all. This year, we intensified our regimen to make sure they’re more prepared than ever.”

SCEC Principal Ray Adolphus Lawrence, Sr., sees the Penn Relays as a metaphor for perseverance and the opportunities that await dedicated student-athletes. He expressed gratitude to the sponsors, local supporters, athletes’ parents, and the school’s management team.

Vincentian Olympian Brandon Valentine-Parris, who competed in the Penn Relays while in high school, offered encouragement. The event ignited his passion, leading to an athletic scholarship, an exceptional collegiate career, and an Olympic berth. Now a high school coach himself, he underscores the transformational power of the Penn Relays.

SCEC carries the hopes of their community as they head to Philadelphia. Their participation demonstrates that with belief, support, and tireless work, Belizean athletes can achieve greatness on the world stage.


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