The Commonwealth Advocates for Recovery Efforts on Friday received a $50,000 donation from proceeds raised through the Governor’s Tournament of Champions.
According to TOC Chairman, Ben Babauta, for over 15 years the tournament’s primary object was to raise funds to support beautification projects within the Commonwealth to support the tourism industry and provide much needed revenue to support the economy.
DFS Saipan president Marian Aldan-Pierce expressed that CARE and long-term recovery efforts support the humanitarian needs of the Commonwealth as well as beautification and rebuilding of the community over a year after Typhoon Soudelor.
“Since 1996, the focus had been on beautification to promote our visitors industry by enhancing our destination landscaping for the Paseo de Marianas, Port to Pathway, and Garapan Street Revitalization Project – Coral Tree Avenue, and Mt. Tapochau. With revenues made available to the Marianas Visitor’s Authority through the hotel occupancy tax, the TOC board decided to focus on our partnership with CARE. At the same we have decided to move TOC from August to May to address the inclement weather often experienced during the rainy season,” she said.
Governor Ralph DLG. Torres reiterated that focusing on rebuilding our community is vital to our community and economy.
“Funds donated to CARE address a much needed cause. We are grateful to all the donors and volunteers who remember the 341 families who need the assistance to help repair and rebuild their homes. I thank the TOC for their hard work and commitment to improving our community in every way possible,” Torres said.
CARE Director Jenny Hegland stated that the proceeds represent the financial support necessary for long-term recovery.
“In the Commonwealth, we care about all our families and $50,000 is a significant contribution. Rebuilding and repairing is costly and right now we provide $3,000 to each family for home rebuilding. In one month, we have been able to complete 11 major projects with our volunteers… We are taking beautification as rebuilding safe and sanitary homes for families…,” she said.
The $50,000 donation will go towards supporting the necessities of members from the Mennonite and World Renew religious groups, who are currently repairing the damaged homes.