Sheran Constance Palacio
Vigor Awards 2020 Humanitarian Award Nominee
Sheran Constance Palacio was born in the beautiful town of Peini Punta Gorda, to mother Zacharias Rose Barcelona Martinez Palacio and father Agustus Palacio. She is the only girl among six boys, and from a young age, Ms Sharon Palacio was blessed with the spirit of work which allowed her to be successful in every role and position she sought. Sharon Palacio started her journey of work informally from the age of 6 by taking care of her younger brothers. As the third eldest child, she was tasked with the assumption of a great amount of responsibility which she took in great stride and worked diligently with her mother to ensure a steady flow of income to support her large family.
This support took form in the selling of homemade products around her town of Punta Gorda and as she became older this same skill transferred into her professional life as one of her core and invaluable skills. She is a psychologist by profession but her career was not limited by this as Ms Palacio has had her fair taste of the world of work and the variety and diversity it offers. Indeed, Ms Palacio has truly had a rich and full professional life, and now after eighteen years of service to the University of Belize, where she worked as coordinator of student services she is retiring. Now her life is beginning a new chapter as she plans to focus fully on developing and growing her many businesses and projects namely, BelAflika Travel and Tours and its smaller branch the Waturugu Dance Troupe.
Also, She has been the driving force behind Youth for World Peace, and its brainchild the Diabetes Run which has been held annually for six consecutive years. Along with these Miss Palacio also has passionately been involved in the managing of Youth for World Peace Wellness Ambassadors, and the YWP Homestay Network which has continuously been a means of income for many Belizeans. Although these projects and companies provide a sneak peek of what Miss Palacio’s future efforts will look like, the University of Belize, with all the beautiful memories that came with it, and the life long friendships established through it, will always hold a place in her heart.
The act of Humanitarianism is to promote all that is beneficial to the welfare of humans, Ms Palacio has more than embodied all that it means to be a humanitarian throughout the journey of her life thus far. This is evident in her various efforts in helping people without sometimes even being aware of the weight of each action and the imprint it made in everyone’s life. She does so without a second thought, as helping and being a positive and uplifting source to everyone she comes in contact with is as natural as breathing, eating, and sleeping, not something to be pondered or given a second thought.
Needless to say, she has more than earned the right to be named a Vigor candidate awardee. This year makes the 6th annual Diabetes Run, an event birthed from the need to spread awareness to the killing machine of diabetes and its rampage in Belizean society and the world. This event has single-handedly changed the way Diabetes is viewed and dealt with in Belize. It has restored hope in Belizeans, as the knowledge that we can beat the disease through everyone’s efforts has become more widespread. The topic of diabetes hits close to home for Miss Palacio which is why she is even more adamant in her efforts of fighting against this non-communicable disease.
She has experienced firsthand what it can do to a person in the form of her late father Augustus Palacio and even now with two of her brothers. Her establishment of YWP Wellness Ambassadors along with her daughter Mystery Sylven Furtado was borne for the exact cause of fighting Diabetes, this time involving youths in the fight against and awareness for upcoming generations against the killer Diabetes. Apart from this aspect of her life, Ms Palacio is certainly no stranger to the world of politics, having been a councillor for 3 years in her city, Belmopan.
During her time as a counsellor, she was the spearhead of an innovative and positive wave of change. Particularly notable was her hand in providing the opportunity to award 40 plus persons in pursuing a Tour Guide Certification. This is one example of the many opportunities that were created for Belizeans during her time as a counsellor. Aside from her very active professional life, Ms Sharon Palacio is a mother to 3 children and grandmother to 8 grandchildren, 4 of whom she successfully raised after parents separation.
However, this number is limited when looking at all the young people she has taken under her wings through the years and who she considers to be as dear to her own children. In her years at UB, she has catered to the needs of many students, sometimes even supporting them to complete their studies. It is safe to say, that Ms Palacio has touched the lives of many and continues to do so, to all who come in contact with her. She anchors, supports, uplifts, and inspires everyone, solely because its exactly the kind of vigorous and powerful individual she is.