Mission Trips to Belize

Lisa is the UMVIM (United Methodist Volunteer in Mission) coordinator for Belize. Contact her to learn more about bringing a team to Belize.

We have three basic types of teams and, most often, blend two types into one trip:

1) Medical oriented teams: Dental services, Vision services and General Medical

2) Outreach based teams: Vacation Bible School, Enhancement of Education


Burrell Boom Team playing with kids

3) Construction based teams that build new facilities as well as refurbish our existing buildings. Mainly we work on our Methodist Schools and Churches. We can use highly skilled groups as well as lower skills for jobs such as painting.

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GENERAL INFORMATION FOR MISSION TEAMS VISITING BELIZE

Belize is situated in Central America, south of Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula. It is the only English speaking country in Central America. It is a popular tourist resort for divers and snorkelers, as the 2nd longest barrier reef in the world is just off shore. For those interested in archaeology Belize has many ancient Mayan sites.

Culturally, Belize considers herself Caribbean though she is located in Central America. The branch of the Methodist Church -MCCA (The Methodist Church in the Caribbean and the Americas) was formed from British roots and includes countries such as Cayman Islands, Jamaica, Haiti and so on.

The Education System

Belize operates a very unique Church / State school system – the majority of schools are run and funded through the churches, with the Government paying teachers’ salaries and some development costs. The Methodist Church (Belize/Honduras District) is responsible for 32 Methodist Schools in Belize and Honduras. With all the church and public schools in Belize there is only enough space for about half the children to attend high school. Education is not free in Belize and past primary level becomes very costly.

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The Methodist Church

The Methodist church in Belize falls under the Belize / Honduras District of the MCCA. In total there are seven circuits; two in northern coastal Honduras and five in Belize. The District Bishop is Rev. Roosevelt Papouloute. Our mission teams tend to travel to points in the country where we have church communities associated with schools. The circuit minister oversees your team and is the link to local persons you will be interacting with as well as your work project. Our Methodist congregations take joy in making sure visiting teams are looked after, assisted by cooking meals as well asworking with the teams on site.

Belize is geographically and politically divided up into sections called Districts (Toledo, Stann Creek, Cayo, Belize, Orange Walk and Corozal). The geographic districtstend to have a Methodist Circuit within having one Circuit Superintendent who is clergy and is this circuit minister who is ultimately responsible for your team. Usually the Superintendent and circuit minister are one in the same but not always.

Harvest Festival Libertad Methodist Church


Rest and Relaxation

For your rest and relaxation Belize is a beautiful place to visit. There are various opportunities ranging from visiting one of the many the ancient Mayan Ruins to snorkeling out on one of the Cayes (pronounced “keys” or islands) situated on the barrier reef – only about 45 minutes’ boat ride from Belize City. Go cave tubing and zip-lining in the jungle near the capital city of Belmopan. We have local contacts for these venues and can help to arrange competitive rates for you!

Youth Team Craziness


UMVIM in Belize- How does it work?????

UMVIM (United Methodist Volunteers in Mission) Is a program that promotes the encounter of volunteers from the United Methodist Church in the US with the world. In our instance the interaction is with MCCA (The Methodist Church in the Caribbean and the Americas) of the Belize/Honduras District. For information about the Honduras portion of MCCA please contact Bob Wood at revbobwood@gmail.com. Lisa Williams is the UMVIM coordinator for Belize and the following information will apply to UMVIM in Belize.

Our objectives of UMVIM in Belize:

  • To build, maintain and support the schools and churches associated with the MCCA of Belize
Zion Park students very low percent from this area attne dhigh school


  • To support the evangelism, outreach and spiritual formation for the Belize MCCA as well as to encourage general overall well being for Belizeans both a part of the MCCA as well as those outside of the fold of the MCCA.
  • To provide opportunities for cultural interaction between Belizeans and individuals from the USA.
  • To provide medical care (Ophthalmic, dental and general medical services) primarily in underserved areas of Belize

Best Practices:

We strongly recommend that teams adhere to UMVIM’s “Best Practices” guidelines:

  1. Have an UMVIM trained team leader
  2. Comply with your conference’s Safe Sanctuary Policy. If you do not have one in place, please ask your coordinator. Belize has a policy you can adopt while you are in country.
  3. Register the team with UMVIM in the US
  4. Purchase UMVIM insurance or equivalent
  5. Develop your team before traveling incorporating spiritual formation into the interaction process when possible. Realizing that some teams that come might be conference wide teams where each member may not be familiar with other team member’s, team development is still important and can be done using modern technology. (Skype etc.)

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Medical care available in Belize:

Depending on what part of the country you are serving determines what medical care is available nearby as well of the quality of it. Most sites are near a local hospital. More specialized care is available in Belize City.

Please discuss with your own personal physician what health care measures to take before traveling to Belize. The decision about malaria prevention, ZIKA Virus, vaccinations and so on are decisions each individual needs to make with his or her own personal health care provider.

Our UMVIM teams tend to travel to points in the country where we have church communities associated with schools. The circuit minister oversees your team and is the link to local persons you will be interacting with as well as your work project. Belize is geographically and politically divided up into sections called Districts (Toledo, Stann Creek, Cayo, Belize, Orange Walk and Corozal). The geographic districts tend to have a Methodist Circuit within having one Circuit Superintendent who is clergy. The circuit minister is ultimately responsible for your team. (Usually is also the Circuit Superintendent but not always) Belize City is vast enough to support two circuits.

We think Belize is the perfect UMVIM destination as English is the official language, we are close to the USA and the country is filled with warm friendly people.

Let’s go! Spread the word and lend a hand!

Contact Information:

Please email Lisa Williams atmethodist4belize@gmail.com





JAMIE WILLIAMS 2016