MONTEGO BAY — The Sandals Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Sandals Resorts International, is seeking the support of the Canadian travel industry during its inaugural staging of Streak it Blue, a 5K Fun Run and After-Party on May 24 in Ocho Rios, sponsored in part by The Yellowbird Foundation.
The event is designed to raise funds and awareness for the SickKids-Caribbean Initiative (SCI), a not-for-profit collaboration between Canada’s Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto and various institutions across six Caribbean islands.
The Canadian travel industry can participate remotely by sponsoring a local child for US$30, allowing that child the opportunity to participate in the 5K run as well as the kiddie after-party which will feature bouncy castles, hot dogs, cotton candy and ice cream.
The SickKids-Caribbean Initiative allows medical professionals in the Caribbean to connect with SickKids oncologists and hematologists in Canada to collaborate on treatment options and also facilitate training and education to support the early identification and treatment of children living with these devastating diseases in the Caribbean.
At present, the SCI believes that children in the Caribbean have a 50% chance of surviving cancer while those in Canada and North America have an 85% chance. The SCI aims to bridge that gap.
“There are hundreds of children across the Caribbean struggling with cancer every day. That these children have a smaller chance of surviving than their peers in Canada and North America is heartbreaking and this is why the Sandals Foundation fully supports the SickKids-Caribbean Initiative and its mandate to improve the chances of the children in the Caribbean,” says Adam Stewart, President of the Sandals Foundation and SickKids-Caribbean Initiative Ambassador.
“Every child deserves a fair chance at survival and the SCI strives to give children across the Caribbean this chance. Through Streak It Blue we are doing our part to support the SCI and we urge everyone to do the same.”
Since the launch of the SCI in February 2013, the Sandals Foundation has donated Can$250,000 to the initiative. The most recent donation of an additional $200,000 will go towards the renovation of a telemedicine facility at Victoria Hospital in Saint Lucia.
Telemedicine rooms are already in operation in the Bahamas and Barbados under the SCI initiative and over the next six months, three more facilities will open in Jamaica, St. Vincent and the Grenadines and Saint Lucia.
For more information and to sponsor a child visit streakingitblue.com.