By BRENT STUBBS
Senior Sports Reporter
THE Local Organising Committee got another $60,000 in their kitty for the 50th Jubilee CARIFTA Games with Pricewaterhouse Coopers, Ernst and Young and Arawak Port Development Limited coming on board as the latest silver medal partners.
All three companies presented cheques of $20,000 each to the LOC on Wednesday during a press conference that was held in the constructed Cultural Village for the games in the eastern parking lot of the Thomas A Robinson National Stadium.
Minister of Youth, Sports and Culture Mario Bowleg was on hand along with LOC chief executive officer Lynden Maycock, CARIFTA chairman Harrison Thompson, North American, Central American and Caribbean (NACAC) president Mike Sands and Dame of CARIFTA Pauline Davis, to welcome the new partners.
Before heading to the House of Assembly, Bowleg said he’s been pleased with the preparation for the games, scheduled for April 7-11 and he’s looking forward to the involvement of the companies who are lending their financial support for the success of the event.
“I am proud today to join hands with these new partners who support our goal of making the upcoming CARIFTA Games amazing and a better venue for our young athletes,” Bowleg said. “As the latest silver partners for 50th CARIFTA Games, we welcome you to the CARIFTA family. I thank them for partnering with us.”
Maycock, in joining in the chorus, said he’s delighted to be among friends from the fraternity of the Bahamas Institute of Chartered Accountants, including PWC, a firm where he got started. “Our community is built on the backs of those who understand the importance of investing in young people,” Maycock said. “For our young people, our future leaders, teachers, coaches, entrepreneurs and so much more.
“The CARIFTA Games are a stage that allows these young athletes to develop the future pillars they become. It is important events such as sports, athletics, cultural activities and other positive activities that we secure a better future for ourselves, communities, region and our nation.”
Maycock said it’s his pleasure to welcome the three companies to the greatest junior regional track and field competition.
All three companies have indicated that they will be on hand for the duration of the games and will be assisting the LOC in whatever way they can.
Myra Lundy-Mortimer, a partner at Pricewaterhouse Coopers, said they have been pleased with the games, which has helped to produce a number of Bahamian athletes who have gone on to excel on the global stage and that is one of the reasons why they decided to become a partner of the LOC.
“We know that an investment in our youth is an investment in the future of our continued success story of the Bahamas for the next 50 years,” Lundy-Mortimer said. “It is with this investment that we proudly stand with the LOC for the CARIFTA Games.
“As a proud sponsor, our team is committed to supporting the legacy that CARIFTA has achieved in youth development, sports and culture, and we are thrilled to make a contribution to the continued investment in the future workforce and athletics in the Bahamas.”
For Ernst & Young, Michelle Thompson, Bahamas country managing partner, stated that they are willing to also help with the development of the next generation of Bahamian young people and the best way to do it is through sports.
Thompson said they believe that the inherent confidence, the leadership skills, working in high-performing teams and the discipline that athletes develop over years of dedicated training add tremendous value to their future paths.
“We admire our athletes who are exhibiting resilience, and promoting good values, which are part of our history and our culture,” Thompson said. “Athletes give us all a good example as they navigate through their challenges while setting their eyes on gold.”
Thompson wished the athletes every success as they represent the Bahamas to the best of their abilities.
Administrative assistant Bianca Aranha, speaking on behalf of her manager Dion Bethell, said Arawak Port Development is just as thrilled as the other partners in making a contribution to the games, but she made an appeal to the general public.
“We are very excited to be a part of this. We want to encourage all Bahamians to come out in their colours and support the young athletes,” Aranha stressed. “We believe in the future of our nation and we know that the CARIFTA Games is the training ground for them to come to the senior level, so we’re looking forward to partnering with the LOC.”
Sands, on behalf of the members of NACAC who will be involved in the games, thanked the three companies for coming on board as partners and stepping up as good corporate citizens.
“NACAC, as we are all familiar with, is the umbrella of the CARIFTA Games, managing the 31 member federations in our athletic family,” Sands said.
CARIFTA, according to Sands, will have a worldwide appearance of important persons from World Athletics, the governing body for athletics and track and field, as they come to watch some of the future stars and so their investment will not go unnoticed in this bar amazing event.
Persons interested in assisting the LOC can contact them online at www. carifta50.com where they can also purchase tickets or they can visit the Cultural Village’s box office on a daily basis.