Bahamas Donates Youth Tourism Education

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico - Members of the travel industry are going full steam ahead with investments in the future - recently making a $45,000 donation to educating youth on opportunities in the industry.

Interval International, working with its Caribbean member resorts, has made a record-breaking donation to the Caribbean Hotel & Tourism Association Education Foundation (CHTAEF).

David Gilbert, executive vice-president of resort sales and marketing for Interval International, presented a $45,000 check, the largest contribution in the foundation's history, to CHTAEF representatives at the Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Investment Conference in San Juan, Puerto Rico.

"Interval commends its resort affiliates for their commitment to this important initiative," noted Gilbert. "We're proud that the vacation ownership industry continues to support educational programs such as this one, which are critical to the long-term success of regional tourism."

Over the past five years, Interval and its member resorts have donated US$120,000 to the foundation. Participants in the 2009 scholarship fund include:

* Antigua - Jolly Harbour Beach Resort, Tranquility Bay Antigua.

* Aruba - La Cabana Beach & Racquet Club, Marriott's Aruba Surf Club, Marriott's

Aruba Ocean Club, Paradise Beach Villas, Playa Linda Beach Resort, Renaissance Aruba

Beach Resort & Hotel, The Aruban Resort and Casino at Eagle Beach.

* Bahamas - Island Seas Resort, Ocean Reef Resort, Woodbourne Resort.

* Cayman Islands - Ramada Grand Caymanian Resort.

* Curaçao - The Royal Sea Aquarium Resort.

* Dominican Republic - Barceló Punta Cana, Cayena Beach Club, Coral Costa Caribe

Resort, Sun Village Resort and Spa.

* Mexican Caribbean - The Royal Cancun.

* Puerto Rico - Aquarius Vacation Club® at Boquerón Beach and Aquarius Vacation

Club® Dorado del Mar Beach and Golf Resort, ESJ Towers, Hyatt Hacienda del Mar.

* St. Lucia - Bay Gardens Beach Resort and Bay Gardens Hotel, Windjammer Landing

Villa Beach Resort & Spa.

* St. Maarten - Flamingo Beach Resort, Pelican Marina Residences.

* U.S.V.I. - Westin St. John Resort and Villas.

"The foundation administers one of the largest scholarship programs in the Caribbean hospitality and tourism industry. Applications are received from young people allover the region and reflect a wide variety of interests and backgrounds," said Tom Pas, the foundation's chairman. "One of the primary goals of the CHTAEF is humanresource development and these funds will definitely assist us in reaching that


The CHTAEF was established in 1987 as a non-profit organization to provide scholarships and special assistance to Caribbean hospitality industry personnel and students pursuing hospitality and tourism careers.

To date, the Education Foundation has awarded more than US$1 million dollars in scholarships and grants. The application

requirements include being a Caribbean national, having a high school or equivalentsecondary school degree, pursuing a tourism-related education degree, and demonstrated financial need.

As a strategic partner of the Caribbean Hotel & Tourism Association and a board member of the Caribbean Tourism Organization's Education Foundation, Interval is committed to understanding the unique needs of the Caribbean region and providing

products and programs tailored to this market.

Source: The Nassau Guardian