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For Immediate Release

MEDIA RELEASE

Sandals Repeat Guests Donate Wheelchair to National Council of and for Persons with Disabilities

CASTRIES, St. Lucia, June 24, 2022— Many guests, like John and Ann Bechtold, associate returning to Sandals with checking into their home away from home and wanting to make a difference in the communities around them. The Bechtholds, loyal Sandals guests, were thrilled to be checking in at Sandals Halcyon Beach and donating their fourteenth wheelchair, this time to the National Council of and for Persons with Disabilities.

“We are delighted to be back in St. Lucia and to be able to continue supporting the Sandals Foundation’s efforts to make a difference in the island’s communities,” Ann Bechthold said.

Since 2009, the couple has donated to education and community development in St. Lucia through the Foundation. With over a dozen trips, they have volunteered with the Sandals Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Sandals Resorts International, and raised funds, packed for a purpose, and donated school and medical supplies, each time making a difference.

John stated that they were inspired to begin donating wheelchairs after personally witnessing how inaccessible mobility devices are.

“In 2018, we began donating wheelchairs because I discovered how difficult it is to find wheelchairs on the islands after falling in Grenada and breaking my hip,” he explained.

The wheelchair was delivered to the National Council of and for People with Disabilities (NCPD) on Monday, June 20, at a handover activity.

“In so many ways, guests visiting our Resorts have taken a personal interest in doing what they can to support the development of key infrastructure in our islands, says Patrice Gilpin, Public Relations Manager at Sandals Foundation. 

“That is the beauty of the Caribbean magic. It is the experience and the connections that are made, resulting in couples like the Bechtolds who not only fall in love with this place we call home, but are so compelled to give back.” 

“The Sandals Foundation provides a unique opportunity for guests, team members, travel agents and other partners to support the causes that are close to their hearts and with that, together we use the power of tourism to bring positive change within communities.”

Earlier this year, while staying at Sandals Royal Caribbean in Montego Bay, Jamaica, the Bechtolds donated a wheelchair to a nearby church.

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Sandals Foundation:

The Sandals Foundation, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, was created to continue and to expand upon the philanthropic work that Sandals Resorts International has undertaken.  It is the culmination of close to four decades of dedication to playing a meaningful role in the lives of the communities where we operate across the Caribbean. The Sandals Foundation funds projects in three core areas: education, community and the environment. One hundred percent of the monies contributed by the general public to the Sandals Foundation go directly to programs benefiting the Caribbean community. To learn more about the Sandals Foundation, visit online at www.sandalsfoundation.org or follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

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