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To Dream is to Win: Sandals Resorts Sponsors the 2022 Jamaica Bobsleigh Team

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Sandals backs Team Jamaica, wishes ‘cool runnings’ as they inspire generations of athletes to come

 

#MontegoBay, Jamaica, February 2, 2022 – Sandals Resorts International is proud to announce its sponsorship of the 2022 Jamaica Bobsleigh Team, as six fierce competitors gear up to compete this month on the world’s most coveted stage for sports. Among the highlights is a four-man team comeback 24 years in the making, with Sandals, too, sponsoring 1998’s qualifying team.

“Sandals has always been a champion for our national athletes as we continue our legacy to support young competitors who aspire to represent our beloved home country locally and on the world stage,” said Sandals Resorts Executive Chairman Adam Stewart. “We beam with pride seeing our beautiful flag waving high, showing the world that Jamaica is not only a nation of dreamers, but doers – and that truly anything is possible when heart and hard work come together. The story of Jamaican bobsleighing is simply incredible and we are along for the long ride, cheering on this extraordinary team as they compete in this winter’s events and then pass down the torch for generations to come.”

Founded in Montego Bay, Sandals Resorts is a long supporter of athletes in training in Jamaica and across the Caribbean through the work of the Sandals Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Sandals Resorts. Sandals’ support of the 2022 Jamaica Bobsleigh Team will cover the substantial logistics and travel costs required to send qualifying athletes to Beijing, as well as the additional bobsleigh events leading up to the 2023 world championship event. The team consists of pilot Shanwayne Stephens, push athletes Matthew Wepke and Rolando Reid, and brakemen Ashley Watson and Nimroy Turgott. Jazmine Fenlator-Victorian is also representing Team Jamaica this year in a new women’s monobob event.

The team is led by team manager Nelson Christian “Chris” Stokes, who has been an active member of the Jamaica Bobsleigh Team since its inception in 1988, and was part of the Olympic team who inspired the ever-popular 1993 film Cool Runnings. For Stokes, who also serves as President and Chairman of the Jamaica Bobsleigh Federation, Sandals’ sponsorship is a full-circle moment, having started out as a Sandals Resorts team member at Sandals Montego Bay in the mid 80s.

“Our return to the world stage is an incredible win in itself and now Sandals Resorts has carried us over the finish line, allowing our team to put their focus on what they do best: bringing the Caribbean heat,” said Stokes. “We are also laying the groundwork for the future, as opportunities such as this one come with the responsibility of helping to ‘pilot’ a new generation of bobsleighers, and Sandals is the perfect partner for this on and off the track.”

Upon their return to Jamaica, Stokes and the athletes will join forces with the Sandals Foundation to plan a number of long-term initiatives geared towards grooming the next generation of athletes. These will include visits to local schools to host motivational speaking engagements, organizing athletic training clinics, nutrition workshops with resort chefs, and more. Sandals Resorts and Beaches Resorts guests can also look forward to special meet and greets with Bobsleigh team members.

“There is a beautiful alignment between what Jamaican bobsledding has done and what Sandals has done in Jamaica for 40 years, and we will remain closely aligned as we work together towards a bright future for young athletes,” said Stokes.

Caribbean News

US Milestone Celebrated

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#Jamaica, June 30, 2022 – This year marks the United States of America’s (USA) 246th anniversary of Independence, and the milestone was celebrated with a reception on June 28 at the Jamaica Pegasus Hotel in New Kingston.  The event also featured the traditional United States Marine Corps Colour Guard ceremony.

Justice Minister, Hon. Delroy Chuck, who represented the Government of Jamaica, extended congratulations to the Government and people of the United States (US) on this significant achievement.

“The Government of Jamaica is pleased to join in commemorating this milestone with our American friends and partners. Today we celebrate a nation that continues to give practical meaning to the declaration of Independence and the vision of the founding fathers for the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. These tenets have been central to the growth and development of the Union since 1776 and its transformation as a global leader,” he said.

For his part, US Ambassador to Jamaica, His Excellency Nick Perry, said the countries’ partnership has been rewarding, and expressed the United States’ continued commitment to strengthening the cooperation between the nations.

“On behalf of the United States Mission to Jamaica, thank you for joining us as we celebrate the 246th anniversary of the Independence of the United States of America. As we celebrate America’s independence, we also celebrate 60 years of partnership between our two countries. Together we have promoted democracy, human rights, and shared security concerns,” he said.

Jamaica established diplomatic relations with the United States in 1962, following its independence from the United Kingdom.

The partnership focuses on reducing corruption; increasing transparency and good governance; fostering Jamaican participation in regional security efforts; strengthening basic education; and increasing energy resiliency.

Since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, the US has provided more than US$16.4 million as well as donations of vaccines to assist Jamaica’s containment measures.

Additionally, over the last 12 months, the United States has collaborated with the Ministry of Labour and Social Security to issue a record number of H2 visas, bringing critical, temporary labour to the US, while providing jobs for thousands of Jamaicans that resulted in millions of dollars in remittances.

Significantly, the Peace Corps, which is also celebrating 60 years of partnership with Jamaica this year, will resume its operations on the island beginning September, following a two-year hiatus due to the pandemic.

 

Contact: Rochelle Williams

Release: JIS

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Positive Outlook for Caribbean Tourism

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Shanieka Smith

Features Writer

 

 June, 30, 2022 – The president of the Caribbean Hotel & Tourism Association (CHTA), Nicola Madden-Greig, says tourism in the Caribbean is recovering faster than expected.

While presenting at the CHTA ‘Caribbean Tourism Fireworks’, she said the Caribbean travel and tourism sector experienced the second-fastest recovery of all regions in 2021. Travel and Tourism have contributed to the gross domestic product (GDP) by 36.6 per cent. She added that they have recovered over 311,000 jobs.

“That is really a testament to how fast Caribbean tourism has been able to come back into play,” said Madden-Greig.

January and February were not as successful because of the uprising of the COVID-19 omicron variant. Travel heightened between March and June, and Madden-Greig reported that summer looks promising and that they “expect that winter 2022-2023 will also be strong”.

“For the June to August period, [the Caribbean is] ahead of our 2019 airline arrivals in terms of what is forecast and on the books by upwards of two per cent,” she said.

The CHTA’s Caribbean Tourism Fireworks is what the trade association uses to communicate regional tourism performance and outlook survey results. In addition to the performance reports, other topics were discussed including the recognition of Caribbean tourism’s resilience; that investments by the tourism industry in capital improvements, health safety and product value are underpinning the region’s tourism recovery; and that labour shortages present immediate and long-term opportunities.

CHTA urged employers, governments, education and training institutions to recruit new employees and prepare communities for careers, employment and ownership opportunities within the sector.

Also present at the CHTA Caribbean Tourism Firework were CHTA’s acting CEO and Director General, Vanessa Ledesma, Jamaican hotelier Clifton Reader, and the chair of CHTA’s Advocacy Committee.

While the speakers agreed that intra-Caribbean travel has great opportunities, they share that there are connectivity issues and issues with preserving, protecting and enhancing the region’s natural resources.

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Sandals Resorts International Appoints Rachel McLarty as Corporate Director of Communications & Public Relations

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Communications Executive Rejoins Brand After Tenure at Distinguished Jamaican Law Firm

 

MONTEGO BAY, JAMAICA, June 15, 2022 – Sandals Resorts International recently  announced the appointment of Rachel McLarty to Corporate Director of Communications & Public Relations, overseeing the company’s corporate communication efforts and public relations initiatives for the Sandals Resorts and Beaches Resorts brands throughout the Caribbean. Reporting to Executive Chairman Adam Stewart and CEO Gebhard Rainer, McLarty returns to the organization after a ten-year hiatus where she previously held the position of Group Director of Corporate Relations.

“We are in a moment of tremendous momentum and require a skilled, expert hand to navigate through what will be an upcoming decade of unprecedented growth for the organization,” said Adam Stewart, Executive Chairman of SRI. “Rachel McLarty is that voice in the Caribbean, and we are thrilled to welcome her back to the company as we celebrate our 40th anniversary and plan for the next forty.”

McLarty, who will be based in the Kingston headquarters of Sandals Resorts International, will lead a talented team of public relations and communication professionals in Jamaica and throughout the entire Caribbean region. During her first tenure with SRI, McLarty served as Group Director of Corporate Relations for the organization for a period of five years, beginning in 2006. Prior to rejoining the company, she served as an attorney-at-law at Myers, Fletcher & Gordon, one of the largest law firms in Jamaica. She is deeply committed to improving and developing Caribbean communities, currently sitting as Chairman of the Board for St. Andrew High School for Girls and the SOS Children’s Villages in Jamaica.

“Sandals Resorts International remains the brand standard for Caribbean organizations, and it is an honour to rejoin the company at such a prolific time,” said McLarty. “And while I have certainly followed the tremendous success of the brands in the last decade, I have remained even more impressed by the organization’s continued commitment to the Caribbean, the region we all call home. I look forward to the incredible work to be done.”

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