The Ritz-Carlton and United Way International have collaborated to establish the Hurricane Ivan Grand Cayman Children’s Relief Fund. When Hurricane Ivan hit the Grand Cayman in September, it left the island’s infrastructure damaged and the many residents homeless. Although The Ritz-Carlton, Grand Cayman, slated to open in December 2004, was not damaged by the storm, the homes and lives of many Ritz-Carlton employees were impacted.The Ritz-Carlton has selected to extend its culture of caring to a community that has suffered the loss of its infrastructure. This initiative is part of the company’s Community Footprints program. To date Ritz-Carlton employees have raised US$35,000 towards the initiative through various fund raising activities including bake sales, talent shows, raffle ticket sales and employee contributions.
Ezzat Coutry, regional vice president for The Ritz-Carlton Hotels of Florida and the Caribbean and Sue Stephenson, senior vice president of human resources gather with employees taking part in The Ritz-Carlton Lifestyle Gift Basket raffle. Proceeds from
the raffle will go towards The Ritz-Carlton Kids Care inititive.
The sole mission of the Relief Fund will be to establish, supply and operate 6 to 8 interim childcare centres and youth camps throughout Grand Cayman, serving over 900 public school children. The need for childcare is dire as many public schools are closed and will remain inoperable until 2005. Working with local churches, public schools and government athletic programs on the island, these childcare centres and youth camps will provide food and water, clothing, medical supplies, games and social activities for children between the ages of five to 16, five days a week, for approximately three months.
This community outreach effort will offer immediate childcare support as the Caymanian people begin rebuilding their island. This initiative has been titled The Ritz-Carlton Kids Care program.
The Ritz-Carlton hotels in each region in North America will group together to adopt a particular center and focus on the needs of their adopted center or youth camp.