Carimar Employee Relief Fund
Carimar Beach Club on Meads Bay in Anguilla is a home away from home for many. Our guests return year after year to enjoy the beauty of our little piece of paradise. Part of what makes Carimar so special is our wonderful staff....all of whom are like family and have been with us for years.
On September 6, 2017, Hurricane Irma made a direct hit on Anguilla. Carimar came through with minor damage but many of our 27 staff members had personal damage to their homes, their cars and their belongings. We want to help them get back on their feet.
Despite their personal misfortune, most of our housekeepers, maintenance, landscaping and office staff were able to get to Carimar to begin cleaning and clearing up our property the next day.
If you love Carimar, please consider making a donation to the Carimar Employee Relief Fund. My name is Marianne Salaymeh and I am the current Chairman of the Board of Carimar Beach Club. I work directly with our general manager, Rolf Masshardt. Since phone, electricity and internet is down on Anguilla currently, I am managing this fund from my home in the US and will forward all proceeds directly to Carimar.
The storm was ferocious. Everyone was impacted and even those who have been through bad hurricanes before say Irma was was like nothing they have been through before. They all say it was more than a Category 5. Everyone has shared stories of hiding in bathrooms and actually believing their homes were going to collapse on them. Even when I’m out driving around and talking to workers repairing other restaurants and buildings, the constant refrain is, “But we have our lives so we are ok”—and they say that with a big smile on their face. Teams of linesman from Canada are working with ANGLEC round the clock and more than 65% of power has been restored. Anguilla will be back stronger than ever.
Staff members are extremely grateful for the money we have distributed to them through this fund. The generosity from all of you to help assist our 25 staff members is beyond my expectations. Our staff is lucky because everyone is still employed full time and many are working overtime. They are happy for that. Everyone has had different personal needs so the money is going for a variety of things—everything from the expected roof, window, and door repairs to broken appliances, wet furnishings and damaged cars. Intangible expenses such as increased data usage on the cell phones have been costly because the school kids still need to do their research on the internet.
On behalf of everyone at Carimar, I thank you all for your kindness and generosity. We hope to see you back on Anguilla soon. The beaches are still gorgeous, the water is calm and beautiful, and the plants are blooming. The goats and chickens are running all over the place. Our flagpole may be bent and our Anguilla flag still a little tattered, but it has remained standing throughout this ordeal. The same friendly people are here waiting for you so come back and see us soon!
Marianne Salaymeh Carimar Board of Directors
The only change has been how the fund will make their way to Carimar. Since Carimar is an Anguillan Company, they to not have the US tax EIN number required to withdraw this money directly into our Carimar US account. Therefore, I have opened a separate personal account in my name with a sub-heading Carimar Employee Relief Fund. GoFundMe is able to use that account to transfer funds. As Chairman of Carimar, I have signatory privileges to our Morgan Stanley accounts and will be wire transferring the proceeds to our Carimar account the next day. From there they are sent to our local Anguilla account.
I can happily announce that an initial distribution was made to each staff member yesterday by Rolf and another will be made tomorrow. The staff all have different priorities and needs and this allows them to use the funds in the best possible way.
The staff greatly appreciates knowing that their friends back in the US and beyond continue to think of them and worry about them even when they are back home.
Carimar looks forward to welcoming many of you back in the near future. We will be more beautiful than ever and our beaches will be waiting!!
With warmest regards,
Chairman of the Board
Staff is working very hard on the properties well as on their own homes. Maintenance and landscaping guys have their hands full with repairs. Our housekeepers, who normally are less busy during our September, also have their hands full! Carimar is currently housing officials from the UN, British government and military, UNICEF and many insurance companies as everyone is pulling together during this difficult time. We are just so grateful that we are in good enough shape all things considered to be able to provide a place to stay for so many.
These are some of the fine young men we are housing at the moment!
I am so happy to read the many warm messages of support for everyone at Carimar. We are thrilled with the response to our requests for help and I have some updates to share today.
Carimar is currently housing a couple of staff members that need shelter because they lost their roofs. I don't believe any of our employees have hurricane insurance for their homes or their cars...the cost is too prohibitive. The highest priority is making sure everyone gets doors, windows and roofs repaired. Next is getting all the damage to cars repaired. Some of our employees live within walking distance to Carimar but many do not. After than we can focus on furnishings and appliances that were damaged.
Electricity will be out for some time but we are fortunate to have a big generator to run our electric and water. We are opening up a few rooms for staff and others to use to come take hot showers. Most people only have cold water right now.
We will be up and running for the season although our landscape may still be a bit bare. Our internet and phones are still out so please bare with us if you have tried to contact the office. We are hopeful that our internet will be restored in the next few days.
PLEASE DO US A FAVOR AND SHARE THIS WITH ANYONE YOU KNOW WHO LOVES CARIMAR AND ANGUILLA. We still have a long way to go and want to offer as much help as possible!!