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Guest Post: Royal Caribbean Haiti Relief Update

Today was a day of positives and negatives.

First the negative, the news from Port-Au-Prince continues to be grim. Everyone has seen the news report so I won’t go into this in too much detail. It just makes us all sad.

On the positive side, I’m proud to say that Royal Caribbean today made a minimum commitment of $1 million toward the Haitian relief effort. This contribution will be spent supporting Food For The Poor, the Pan American Development Foundation, and other organizations in Haiti that are engaged in the relief effort. As I mentioned yesterday, the company will be contributing 100 percent of the net revenue earned from Independence of the Seas’ call today at Labadee. We shared this information with our guests yesterday and the response we received from them was very positive. Many guests that have heard about this tragedy wanted to do something and this was good way for them to show their support.

In addition, the first relief supplies were off-loaded today from Independence of the Seas. These will be distributed by the Food For The Poor. Here are some photos that I received from our folks on the ground:

Haiti Relief Effort - Royal Caribbean employee unloads supplies in Labadee from Independence of the Seas

Haiti Relief Effort - Royal Caribbean employee unloads supplies in Labadee from Independence of the Seas

On another positive note, we have put all our plans into action, from coordinating employee and guest contributions from all of our ships to generous donations of relief items from our business partners, which will be taken to Haiti next week. The outpouring of support has been overwhelming, so I want to thank everyone that has contributed to this effort, especially our vendors who have given so generously. Also, the team at Royal Caribbean has really pulled things together here and I want to thank them as well.

Haiti Relief Effort - Off Loading Supplies in Labadee from Independence of the Seas

Haiti Relief Effort - Off Loading Supplies in Labadee from Independence of the Seas

I’ve been reading some of the responses on the blog and one common concern I noticed from our readers is the subject of security. Throughout the 30 years that we have been working with Haiti, safety and security of our guest has always been our top priority. As any resort area would have, we do have a dedicated security team that protects the integrity of the site.

In addition, we approach security in Labadee by developing strong relationships with the local communities in which we live and work. We put these words into action by sponsoring schools; constructing water projects, bridges, docks, community centers; and supporting continued development efforts within the region. We do these things not just to ensure security, but also because it is the right thing to do for our neighbors and the people of Haiti.

We also create employment and financial opportunities for businesses who supply us with some of the goods and services that we need to operate on a daily basis. Labadee employs 240 full-time people and indirectly impacts another 300 through the straw market, hair braiding, and other companies that supply goods and services to the site.

Simply put, from a business perspective, security of our guests and employees is very important and we take it very seriously.

- John Weis, Associate Vice President, Private Destinations, Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd.

Haiti Relief Effort - Supplies being lowered from Independence of the Seas

Haiti Relief Effort - Supplies being lowered from Independence of the Seas

Haiti Relief Effort - Supplies arrive in Labadee from Independence of the Seas

Haiti Relief Effort - Supplies arrive in Labadee from Independence of the Seas

Haiti Relief Effort - Supplies arrive in Labadee from Independence of the Seas

Haiti Relief Effort - Supplies arrive in Labadee from Independence of the Seas

Interested in helping? Royal Caribbean International is working with Food For The Poor and the Pan American Development Foundation. We encourage guests to make monetary donations to either of these organizations which are currently engaged in the relief effort. For even more information on Royal Caribbean’s humanitarian relief to Haiti, click HERE.

36 responses to:
“Guest Post: Royal Caribbean Haiti Relief Update”

  1. stephljones

    I am so glad to read this message and to know that Royal Caribbean is contributing to this beautiful country.

    I do have a concern though… this information needs to be out in the media much more…I think it is important for people to know the good things that Royal Caribbean is doing to help the people of Haiti in this devestating time. By sending supplies directly to a port, Royal Caribbean has an opportunity to reach out to people who need help and people who want to help.

    More should know about this effort, and the capabilities that Royal Caribbean has with a functioning port in Haiti.

  2. Holly schultz

    I am happy to hear that a cruise I will be going on February 20th on the Independence of the Seas will still be stopping at Labadee, but I was wondering if there will be any opportunities to volunteer either prior to getting into port (for example, packaging meals on board the ship on one of our at sea days prior to Labadee) or having an opportunity to volunteer while on the island. I understand by offering this option that revenues to RCCL would be reduced, but I think it is the right thing to do and that if you allowed us the opportunity to package meals on one of the at sea days that people would feel like they were doing SOMETHINg to make a difference. Could you tell me if RCCL will be offering something like this rather than just a monetary donation?

  3. Andy

    I never doubted what a great cruise line Royal Caribbean was, but this just shows the world. I am sure Haiti is so grateful.

  4. Jack and Kathie Abbott

    Thank You! We am so happy to see that you are starting to think bigger!

    We are happy to be associated with RCCL.

  5. Alix Remponeau

    On behalf of the many Haitians whose voices you cannot hear, please accept my Heartfelt thanks for your generosity and outpouring of love towards the people of Haiti. Bravo ! You are helping to save lives. Please extend our sincere thanks to all your employees who responded to this call.

    Alix Remponeau
    6 Nicole Court
    Manorville, New York 11949

  6. Heather rimmer

    Well done RCCI. There but for the grace of God go I. it makes me so proud to be one of RCCI/Celebrity family, my thoughts and prayers to all Haitians and everyone else affected. Thanks to all involved.

  7. V. Murray Vandewater

    The tragedy in Haiti is monumental. While my family made an immediate donation through the Canadian Red Cross, your comments on the support that RCI is offering are very moving; as is indeed the world wide response to this overwhelming catastrophe. We are taking a cruise that will visit Labadee in March and we look forward to joining the RCI “family” in additional support. While we all pray for Haiti, lets continue the efforts such as you have outlined. Our thanks to you and yours at RCI for RCI’s thoughtful and compassionate response.

  8. Anthen Morrow

    My wife and I are sailing soon on the Explorer of the Seas, with Labadee as one of our destinations. We are very concerned about the devastating earthquake in Haiti, but it seems that Royal Caribbean is doing the right thing by committing to the relief effort while still calling on Labadee and supporting the local economy. Seeing the photos of relief supplies being offloaded only a few days after the quake was reassuring to us.

  9. Margie

    As RC customers that have traveled to Haiti several times, we are glad to see that RC is helping the people of Haiti in this time of disaster. How is RC helping the employees you have from Haiti in terms of helping them locate and reunite with family?

  10. Patric

    When I see this pictures here an idea is coming up to my mind. I don’t know if it is possible, but due to the fact that the port of POP is heavily damaged is there no way to bring supplies with ships to the dock of Labadee at the days where there are now cruise ships and then bring them e.g. via navy helicopter to the people?
    I really don’t know if such things are possible but it is worth a thought.

    I was in Labadee just a few weeks ago and I’m really shocked!!!

  11. renea

    First off THANK YOU for all that you do. I was in Labadee last year and the people of the island were first on my mind when this tragedy struck. This morning I made a vow that I would never again set foot on a cruiseline if someone didn’t STEP UP and help! I am embarassed that I have cruised with other lines that aren’t helping, shame, shame on them! But thank God for the compassion the leadership of Royal Carribean has shown, thank God indeed. I can now say, I will never again consider another cruiseline. May God bless what you deliver and multiply it in miraculous ways to do the most good and bring Him glory!

  12. Annette

    I’m so glad that I found where RLC is placing posts regarding Haiti and your efforts. I knew this great company had to be doing something. Might recommend adding something on the home page where to find the updates. Thank you for continuing to support Labadee. I agree the best thing RLC can do is to continue the partnership as long as the safety for all people are a main priority. Thank you!

  13. Lisa

    I am a Diamond Plus member of the C&A Society and I commend Royal Caribbean for their speedy response to helping the people of Haiti and for their commitment to helping the Haitian relief effort on an on-going basis.

  14. Julie

    Thank you for taking the time to post these informative daily updates. It’s good to know that Royal Caribbean is helping in so many positive ways.

  15. Gianmarco

    A lots of compliment of what are you doing. I think to have good understund what have you write.
    I’m sorry for my English but I am Italian.
    I have trip with you in Haiti.
    Good luk

  16. Robert & Ellen Peterson

    I have sailed with RC several times and I am not suprised by RC and their people or their passagers. I am proud to be a Crown & Anchor member. Keep up your good work and I hope to sail a gain in the near futures. You guy are the best.

  17. Takashi

    I read this message and now want to say very good job.
    I am going to Haiti by Liberty of the seas in Feb.
    I don’t know what I can do for Haiti people. Maybe bring some extra food donate some money…
    I want to help as much as I can with Royal Caribbean staff.
    Please up date what company doing!

    Sorry my English is very poor…

  18. Takashi

    I read this message and now want to say very good job.
    I am going to Haiti by Liberty of the seas in Feb.
    I don’t know what I can do for Haiti people. Maybe bring some extra food cloth… donate some money…
    I want to help as much as I can with Royal Caribbean staff.
    Please up date what company doing!

    Sorry my English is very poor…

  19. thomas lamb

    You are doing great things to help the people of Haiti. We were in Labadee last year, the people were very nice. May God bless you.

  20. thomas lamb

    Thank you for the great work you are doing for the people of Haiti. We were in Labadee last year, the people were great. May God bless you.


    Hurray to Royal Caribbean! A classy and generous gesture from a class act company.

  22. jackie countryman

    We have been on three RCL cruises and two stopped in Labadee. Thank RCL for having a “heart” for the people of Haiti. I thought it was one of the most beautiful places and I am proud to be a Crown & Anchor member. God bless you all and I am saving up for our next cruise!

  23. Joanne Mackay

    I don’t think that RCCL should subject their passengers to a stop in Haiti. Do you read the news. I am sailing on the Jewel of the Sea this week and I am not comfortable getting off the ship at Labadee. Send money, but have concern for your passengers safety. Disease can spread rapidly.

  24. JULIE

    As a frequent cruiser I was interested to find out what the cruise companies were going to do in this crisis, knowing too well that much of their business is crusing around the beautiful carribean… I felt so strongly that if none of the companies were putting themselves out to help.. i.e. a ship could be used as dwellings for a while, as a hospital, as food sources…surely it wouldn’t hinder the cruise companies that much… anyway, I am very pleased to see that RCI are acting in some way…. but much more could be done..

  25. Joan H. Laurino

    Bravo!! Royal Caribbean are angels in my book! My donation will be with you people who are doing wonders under these horrible circumstances. Here, I see where my money is going, whereas before I was extremely cautions with all the news reports. As a member of The Crown & Anchor Society, you have my loyalty for life. RCCL is actively helping those poor souls more than all the hullabaloo seen on the Port au Prince tarmac! Too bad that the news media is not mentioning the RCCL’s efforts.

  26. Mike H

    Having visited Labadee myself on Explorer, my first thoughts when I heard about the quake were about the people there who made our stay so memorable. Our guide Lamy and his co workers. I say well done RCI. You as a company are there giving and helping in Haiti’s time of need. I am proud to be a C&A member. We support you and will be cruising with you again soon.

  27. cHRIS

    Has RCI approached other cruise lines about allowing the use of their pier to deliver aid to Haiti?

  28. Nick Hall

    Unfortunately the aid delivered is overshadowed by the fact that you elected to have a barbeque and party on the private beach (complete with armed guards) right afterwards.

    Whatever must they think of us?

    I will never take a cruise with you, and will urge anyone I know to do the same.

    You should be ashamed for your complete lack of taste.

  29. Shawn

    I applaud your food and financial contributions to the people of Haiti.

    However .. dropping a boatload of western vacationers onto an island that was devastated less than a week ago? There are bodies decomposing in the street.

    I’ve rarely witnessed this kind of disrespect.

  30. Pingback: Tweets that mention Guest Post: Royal Caribbean Haiti Relief Update « Why Not? --

  31. Shawn

    I’ve noted that my comment has been removed by your editorial staff. I’ve created a Google Sidewiki entry with my previous comment.

  32. Larry fetters

    Being Royal Caribbean cruisers and having been to Labadee all I can say is keep up the good work. For the doubters of the world, they don’t realize the people of Labadee are dependant on your ships to survive, Let alone all the relief supplies that are geeting delivered to that side of the island. KEEP UP THE GOOD WORK.

    Larry Fetters

  33. Rick & Judith Hazelton

    Having travelled with Royal Caribbean twice to Labadee,Haiti and enjoying the people we met there,I feel particularly proud of Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines for Their Participation of aid to Haiti.They have already contributed to Haiti before this devasting blow . They have brought Money to the Island in Tourists and Tourism, not to forget the landing costs etc.etc. I feel I have made the right choices in using Royal Caribbean Cruises, and this solidifies my belief in Them. I Believe anyone in the employ of Royal Caribbean from bottom to top, should join in being proud of being a part of this unselfish Organization….Rick Hazelton

  34. Cynthia M. Zito

    The efforts made by RCCL especially with the crew and their families is admirable. Helping with the delivering of supplies is paramount as well. The Haitians truly need the support of our commerce and to take that away would be devastating to the recovery of the country as a whole. As a diamond member, I applaud you and your efforts!

  35. Marie Dearaway

    I can only echo the kudos made to Royal Caribbean, in regard to how smartly it has stepped up to the plate for the people of Haiti. Besides donating proceeds of Labadee-inclusive sailings and money and food distribution, the decision to allow passengers to continue to disembark there since the earthquake was, in fact, high-minded and courageous. To cancel this port destination, or prevent passengers from interacting with hundreds of Haitian employees in Labadee would simply have meant loss of income to these folks when they need it most. Bravo to those who at RCI who met and discussed the possible ramifications of “negative press”, and went ahead with what would help most, regardless.

    Clearly, the majority of C&A members, myself and my husband included, understand and support the decision. To those who have health and security concerns, please rest assured that Labadee remains a private resort on a peninsula apart from the danger area. The workers waiting to share your time there will be so very glad you came. Furthermore, the assumption by media and a handful of posters that RCI and its guests are anything less than compassionate and respectful in Labadee at this time, of any, simply does not make sense. Why not make the same assumption of all those on the beaches of neighbouring Dominican Republic?

    To those who are able to donate, or to cruise to Labadee now and in the years to come, please know that we appreciate your contribution on behalf of us all. Well done, RCI.

  36. Russian souvenirs

    can i translate in Russian and post on my blog? )

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