Innovator, entrepreneur and passionate cultural advocate for all things Belize, Cyril Urawei is the founder and creative force behind UBAFU Marketing & Entertainment … a truly unique and dynamic marketing company that helps the business world and the entertainment world come together in a spirit of partnership and brotherhood to sponsor cultural events, promote a positive message, and help build stronger communities.
UBAFU, from the Garifuna word meaning power, represents a labor of love for Cyril, who combined the years of internet marketing experience he developed in the U.S., with his passion to encourage all Belizeans to reach their highest potential and to give back to their communities by connecting with each other socially, spiritually, educationally and professionally. Though he is well known in many areas of Belize, and the buzz about UBAFU is growing daily, Cyril’s journey began as a young man born of modest means, yet guided by some very strong, inspirational voices in his life.
As the youngest of 10 children raised in a close family in Dangriga Town, he watched his mother work hard to bring up her children and grandchildren with very limited resources at her disposal. Not only was she a pillar of strength for her family, but she was also a “mother,” of sorts, to many other children in the neighborhood in need of parental love, encouragement and guidance. At an early age, he learned from a resourceful and dedicated mother how to accomplish a whole lot with very little.
Like many young men, Cyril was also encouraged by the late Bishop Martin, who was a trusted mentor who taught him many things over the years … even providing him his first job right out of high school. Bishop Martin would always exhort him to “never settle for less”, and encouraged him to “speak up”, even if it was to the Bishop himself, encouraging Cyril that he, too, had a voice.
And, above all, Cyril has also always felt the divine influence of God over his life that guides him to treat others as he would want to be treated. For Cyril, this relationship is the foundation upon which everything else rests; and in years past, he has even led small men’s discussion groups meant to encourage and empower others to walk under the guidance and the light of His love.
As a young man in Belize, Cyril would grab every chance he could to work part time in the summers to help out his family. Over time, his love of technology finally met with opportunity when he became a part time computer instructor and PC field technician at one of his sibling’s company called WorldCom Technologies. In time, the opportunity to move to the U.S. presented itself, and he left for Chicago, Il., and, eventually, southern CA.
Although he was able to get some computer technician side gigs through friends, family and client referrals, he faced the same challenges that many Belizeans encounter in making the professional and cultural connections needed to transition into a businessman and entrepreneur in America.
In time, by doing some graphic design work on a borrowed laptop, Cyril was able to really kick start his technology career, and eventually began to grow a client base, leading to the creation of his very own successful business My Techie Friend, an Orange County, CA based website design and internet marketing business, through which he learned and honed his skills in helping businesses make themselves easier to find through search engine optimization, social media marketing, video marketing, and more. The professional success that he had worked so hard to achieve had, at last, become reality.
However, coming from modest means has made Cyril all the more thankful for the success he has enjoyed in the United States. In fact, many of his fellow, successful Belizeans in the U.S. wholeheartedly agreed that their personal success was not complete unless they were giving back to their communities. This conviction was the inspiration for becoming the publisher of Belize In America, (affectionately known as BIA) an online cultural magazine and blog dedicated to the social, political, and spiritual advancement of the Belizean people. Through BIA, Cyril has had the opportunity to travel around the U.S. as well as Belize taking videos and capturing most of the major Belizean festivities, thereby amassing tons of event footage, and establishing a huge network of people, from both business and entertainment over the years.
Although Cyril established the foundation of his success through the building of amazing, professional websites, the evolution of digital marketing has broadened his focus from building marketing tools (such as websites) to building the overall digital marketing strategy that markets products & services and increases brand awareness that puts the websites to good use in the growing of his clients’ businesses.
It is out of this crossroads between his internet/digital marketing experience and his travels and connections he’s made through Belize In America that UBAFU Digital Marketing Agency was born.
As a lover of country and culture, and a passionate advocate for unity, Cyril has seized an opportunity yet again to engage, encourage, and help empower others to succeed. Cyril’s motto with UBAFU, “Let Us Build Your Brand, So You Can Build Your Business!”