GlendaNearly a dozen years after Viatorian Associate Glenda Francis started a drop-in center for seniors, she is being hailed as a positive role model for women across the country of Belize.

Glenda was one of 16 “Outstanding Women” recognized for their individual contributions to Belizean society as part of the culmination of the country’s Women’s Month celebration.

“We don’t have to look beyond our borders,” said Cynthia Williams, Acting Director, Women’s Department. “We have wonderful, dynamic, outstanding women right here who are able to serve as role models.”

Glenda is a native of Belize, who attended St. Francis Xavier School and later returned to teach there.

In 2001, Glenda started “HelpAge,” a non-governmental agency at a local convent, dedicated to reach out to local seniors. The former teacher has directed its growth so that it now has its own center, a van to transport the seniors who cannot drive, and a coordinated series of activities designed to enhance their quality of life.

Based on the philosophy that seniors have much to offer, “HelpAge” offers a variety of programs that combine socializing with embroidering arts and crafts, visiting the sick and shut-ins and donating food to the poor.