All you wanted to know about the Red Cross Aruba

Besides being a successful developer/hotelier Jurgen Van Schaijk is very active with the Red Cross Aruba and made excellent efforts to sell tickets for its fund-raising garden party, which took place last night at the Surfside Marina.

It was a sold-out event, well-attended by what my colleague Tito Lacle called power people and nicely decorated by Flora Market, Santa Rosa, and a number of generous liquor purveyors.

The band was first-class, Blue Boulevard, playing in the bit removed pavilion, offering party goers the opportunity to network and talk in the garden. So, they did. They could hear each other, and the dance floor remained empty until I left, but who knows maybe they danced later in the night, at the end of conversation topics, and when the buzz kicked in.    

The governor of Aruba, his excellency, Alfonso Boekhoudt graced the party with his presence. The Red Cross Aruba is one of his favorite organizations and he is a staunch supporter of its activities. He talked from the heart, he told me, he made no formal speech, but outlined the organization’s contributions to our community.

What I learned: The Red Cross supports 150 migrant-refugees at a local shelter. Yesterday, the first Red Cross baby was born by Caesarian. True to its charter, the organization takes care of people, regardless of the fact that the government drags its heels, in taking decisions about migrant-refugees, who have nothing besides their Red Cross affiliation.

I also learned that in collaboration with AZV, the Red Cross is opening a hospice in Savaneta, a friendly place to spend the last dying weeks/days, instead of an expensive, cold hospital bed.

I thought that Jurgen’s fund-raising request letter was detailed and interesting, and I am reproducing it for you:

Of course, you know the Red Cross Aruba as a “first aid” “disaster relief” organization, wrote Jurgen, however we do much more like:

  • Social assistance for the poor by providing an emergency food package; 
  • Social assistance for lonely elderly, visiting them at their homes and socialize as well as regular events where they can come together and enjoy a meal together;
  • Social assistance and advice for asylum seekers and refugees that need help;
  • We have a charity bazaar at which inexpensive clothes can be purchased;
  • Red Cross Aruba also manages an emergency home for those who become homeless e.g. when one’s home got lost in a fire or flooding;
  • Red Cross Aruba provides all kinds of training, you might be interested for your own organization and family to receive certified training, attached the several courses, be prepared, you won’t regret it;
  • Red Cross Aruba provides ambulance services for events as well as during calamities, within a couple of months we will have 2 new ambulances on Aruba for our community;
  • Assistance during carnival, priceless;
  • The above is just a short list! 

A couple of facts from recent history, still fresh in memory but I still would like to share these with you:

  • Red Cross Aruba assisted with the flooding in 2016, we assisted during and after the flooding more than 150 households;
  • Red Cross Aruba’s volunteers arrived already before Hurricane Irma made landfall on St Maarten (SXM) in order to prepare for the situation during and after Irma in 2017, over 60 volunteers assisted in this disaster;
  • Red Cross Aruba made a large financial contribution to the victims of SXM during hurricane Irma, the most powerful storm ever recorded in the region;
  • The Red Cross Aruba director Michel La Haye was in charge of the Red Cross emergency relief operation on SXM, he spent many weeks assisting under very tough circumstances together with his team of professionals and volunteers from Aruba but also volunteers from SXM, BON, CUR and NL;

A couple of facts that are anticipated for the next coming months:

  • Hurricane season is predicted to be very active, let’s keep our fingers crossed for the best, prepare for the worst;
  • the humanitarian situation in Venezuela is devastating, we need to be prepared to assist when needed;
  • any other calamity that might occur.

Palliative care

Red Cross Aruba – amongst other organizations – is also contributing to the new palliative care on Aruba, we trust to have this in place in the course of 2018.

What have we – Amsterdam Manor Beach Resort and MVC Eagle Beach – done ourselves?

  • We made a 5-year financial commitment @Afl. 5K per year;
  • We host the yearly elderly dinner event;
  • We provide all kinds of financial assistance as well as assistance in kind when needed on a day to day basis when needed;
  • We will buy 10 tickets ourselves.

All of the above would not have been possible without Red Cross volunteers, they are the most important asset of the organization. These very same volunteers will be ready to assist you, your family and/or organization in difficult times. Help them to be ready when called upon.

Bear in mind that the Red Cross does not receive any financial support from our government, we really depend on private donors, like yourselves!

You, your family and your organization can count on the Red Cross Aruba, we will be amongst one of the first to assist you in need.

Can I take you up for 1 ticket?



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June 23, 2018
Rona Coster