Fishing Boat for Haiti Donated in Honor of Palm Beach Donor: 2nd Annual Hope Floats Includes Fishing Tournament for Kids

COCONUT CREEK, Fla. (Oct. 26, 2017)  Thanks to generous donors, families in Haiti's new Alpha Village are closer to realizing their dream of having their own fishing village.

About 100 people attended Food For The Poor's 2nd Annual Hope Floats Kids' Dock Fishing Tournament & Docktail Party at the Sailfish Club of Florida in Palm Beach to raise money for the fishing village.

At the event, committee member Chrissie Ferguson was surprised by the donation of a fiberglass fishing boat in her name by her father, John "Skip" Randolph, who traveled with Ferguson and Food For The Poor to Haiti in May. The boat will be christened "Miss Chrissie."

"My heart is bursting just thinking about the happy faces and grateful hearts in Alpha," Ferguson said.

Sunday's event reunited Ferguson with four other Palm Beach County residents, including Amy Royster Bridger, Kate McCoy, and Pamela Janson and her son, Crede, who have all traveled to Haiti and Alpha Village with the charity.

Bridger, who chaired Hope Floats with her husband, Ryan, told Hope Floats guests that the fishing boats provided by donors help the poor catch larger fish farther from shore.

"You know the old adage, 'If you teach a man to fish.' This truly is a sustainable program that is helping people change their village over a generation," Bridger said. "They are able to fish for themselves, their families and to have income and a business."

Sunday's event included a fishing tournament with children fishing alongside parents. Prizes were awarded to Lexi Cornall, Biggest Fish; Ella Axtell, Most Exotic Fish; Caroline Anttila, Most Dangerous Fish; Henry Orthwein, Most Inches of Fish Caught; and Marshall Ferguson and Mae Havlicek (tie), Smallest Fish.

Sponsors for Hope Floats included: AMC Custom Builders, Lumitec, AB Drilling and the Sailfish Club of Florida.

Food For The Poor has completed 60 homes in the new Alpha Village and 50 more are under construction. With the help of compassionate donors, the new community will be brought closer to self-sufficiency and better nutrition through the new fishing village.

The old Alpha Village, located on the outskirts of Port-au-Prince, was overcrowded with families who were living in shacks with no access to clean water or sanitation. The stench of rotting garbage made day-to-day living very difficult.

Since 2007, 43 fishing villages have been built in Haiti through Food For The Poor and its donors. The villages dot the country's coastline and bring essential protein and needed income to communities that previously struggled to get either one from the sea.

The new fishing village for Alpha Village will include four 18-foot fiberglass boats with outboard engines, GPS fish finders and handheld radios, fishing tackle and safety equipment, a locking storage shed, solar-powered light and access to clean water and sanitation.

The fishermen also will receive training in deep-sea fishing techniques while learning how to catch mahi-mahi, yellowtail snapper and tuna that can be used to feed their families and sold to markets to provide income.

Delane Bailey-Herd, Senior Field Representative for Food For The Poor, thanked guests for attending Hope Floats.

"Your being here tonight literally brings about the renewal of dreams to families in Haiti," she said.

To watch a video of committee member Chrissie Ferguson's most recent trip with her father, go to www.FoodForThePoor.org/alphavillage.

Fundraising for the fishing village continues. To make a donation for this project, please visit www.FoodForThePoor.org/hopefloats2017.

Food For The Poor, one of the largest international relief and development organizations in the nation, does much more than feed millions of the hungry poor primarily in 17 countries of the Caribbean and Latin America. This interdenominational Christian ministry provides emergency relief assistance, clean water, medicines, educational materials, homes, support for orphans and the aged, skills training and micro-enterprise development assistance. Over the last 10 years, fundraising and other administrative costs averaged less than 5% of our expenses; more than 95% of all donations went directly to programs that help the poor. For more information, please visit www.FoodForThePoor.org.

Michael Turnbell

Public Relations
954-427-2222 x 6054
michaelt@foodforthepoor.com