Jamaica’s largest charitable organization, Food For The Poor (FFTP), has launched its first-ever multinational virtual race that seeks to raise funds to help the less fortunate who have been severely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. The virtual race will be hosted throughout the month of June under the theme ‘Race for Hunger’ and will be syndicated in the United States and Canada. Participants have the option to either walk, ride, run or wheelchair.
The initiative is also welcoming support of the charity’s efforts to provide food, shelter and income sustainability for millions of families across the Caribbean and Latin America by donating through the organization’s website (www.foodforthepoor.org).
Development and Marketing Manager at Food For The Poor (FFTP) Jamaica, Marsha Burrell-Rose indicated that the idea for the virtual race was birthed out of a desire to help those whose dire situations were made worse due to the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. She said; “Every day we see first-hand how the less fortunate among us are struggling to survive and to access the most basic care. Their situation has been compounded by the fact that with COVID-19, they are faced with the real possibility of contracting a potentially life threatening virus. Through the ‘Race for Hunger’ virtual run, we are encouraging everyone to do whatever they can to support the less fortunate by donating to a worthy cause that will help to alleviate some of the challenges these families are faced with on a daily basis.”
A number of well-known Jamaican stars and public figures have pledged their support for the virtual month-long event. Among them are Olympic Medallist and former World Champion, Yohan Blake; Jamaican footballer, Leon Bailey and Paralympian Sasha-Gaye Thompson, to name a few.
Yohan Blake, who recently formed a partnership with FFTP through his YB Afraid Foundation, shared that “Food For The Poor (FFTP) has been doing a tremendous job helping millions of people to receive much needed food and shelter. The pandemic has affected them in a very serious way and we are encouraging everyone to participate in the virtual run and donate to the cause all the while staying active.”
For a cost of US$35, the virtual fundraiser is encouraging Jamaicans at home and abroad to stay active while helping Jamaican families to receive much needed assistance.
Burrell-Rose is also urging Jamaicans, whether or not they participate in the race events, to create their own personal fundraising pages through the FFTP website and challenge friends and family to donate to the cause. “We need all the support we can get and we have incorporated technology to make it as easy as possible for persons to donate to help our brothers and sisters in need. So whether they want to do a bank transfer, PayPal, credit or debit card or even drop off a cheque to our office, it will come in handy. No amount is too small or too large.”
Food For The Poor Jamaica, the largest charity organization in Jamaica and is part of Food For The Poor Inc., located in Florida, USA – the largest international relief and development organization in the United States. It is an interdenominational Christian organization that assists the poor in 18 countries in the Caribbean and Latin America. FFTP Jamaica partners with a number of stakeholders including churches, non-governmental and private sector organizations, children’s homes and service organizations throughout the island that deal directly with the poor to fill their most urgent needs and to encourage self-sufficiency. The work of FFTP is funded solely through donations.