It would appear that the cruise sector is also getting involved to assist with the relief effort in the Caribbean as Royal Caribbean International (RCI) and Celebrity Cruises, which operate cruise services to several Caribbean states, have contributed over US$1,500,000 to Caribbean countries affected by hurricanes this season.The two lines are donating US$1,250,000.00 in cashÊto be distributed among The Bahamas, Haiti, Jamaica, Grand Cayman and Grenada, said Horace C. Hord, Jr., the cruise company’s regional vice president of government and community relations for the Eastern Caribbean. US$50,000.00 of these funds is for the Caribbean Tourism Organisation Relief Fund, set up to provide monetary assistance to impacted member states.
The lines will also donate US$15,000.00 of these funds to the Caribbean Hotel Association Foundation to be used for children impacted by the hurricanes. CHA and the two lines will jointly determine how these funds are disbursed.ÊÊÊÊ
Mr. Hord added that an additional US$300,000.00 has been earmarked for the Caribbean in relief supplies to include water, food and tools.
“The Caribbean region is a real value to Royal Caribbean International and Celebrity Cruises and it is fitting that we contribute as best we can to assist the countries affected by the hurricanes,” Mr. Hord said.
As the extent of the damage caused by the hurricanes became clearer, CTO began talks with its Allied members and partners, encouraging them to come to the aid of affected countries. RCI and Celebrity Cruises were among the first to promise assistance.
In addition to the financial donations, both of the lines are working with various governments to allocate crew resources for infrastructure cleanup. The lines intend to continue their off-ship efforts over the next several weeks.
“On behalf of our member countries, I would like to express our deepest gratitude to Royal Caribbean International and Celebrity Cruises for their charitable donation during this time of need for Caribbean nations that have been affected by Hurricanes Frances and Ivan and Tropical Storm Jeanne,” said Jean Holder, secretary general of CTO.