Food For The Poor’s 23rd Annual Building Hope Gala: Adam Stewart, CD, Deputy Chairman and CEO of Sandals Resorts International and the ATL Group and President of Sandals Foundation’s Board of Directors to be Honored

COCONUT CREEK, Fla. (Nov. 20, 2017)  Guests will embark on a journey to the golden age of travel and provide hope for Haiti at Food For The Poor’s 23rd Annual Building Hope Gala on Saturday, Feb. 3, 2018, at the Royal Palm Yacht & Country Club in Boca Raton.

Attendees will be invited to create a legacy of compassion by pledging to build homes to benefit the people of Boen, Haiti. The area is in Ganthier on flat dirt plain, where 90 percent of the residents survive on less than $1 per day and live in disintegrating mud huts that offer no protection from the elements.

“Most of us have no idea what it is like to be destitute, hungry and without shelter. A safe, sturdy house, with access to clean drinking water is a fundamental human right,” said Robin Mahfood, President/CEO of Food For The Poor. “Our goal is to get these families into homes that protect them, give them hope for the future, and allow them to improve other areas of their lives.”

Since the charity was started in 1982, Food For The Poor donors have built more than 122,000 housing units for people in desperate need of safe shelter.

Adam Stewart, CD, Deputy Chairman and CEO of Sandals Resorts International and the ATL Group and President of Sandals Foundation’s Board of Directors will be honored at the gala with the Ambassador For The Poor Award for his efforts to help the poor in Jamaica and the wider Caribbean through many educational and community initiatives.

Because of the generosity of Stewart and the Sandals Foundation, children at Seville Golden Pre-School are learning in new spacious classrooms and in a new building with bathrooms, kitchen and a resource center. When schools across the island faced a dire shortage of furniture, Sandals Foundation responded by donating 1,100 student desks and chairs. The Foundation also has supported Food For The Poor-Jamaica’s Christmas For The Classroom event, which raised funds to purchase additional student desks and chairs. And it has been an enthusiastic supporter of the charity’s 5K Run/Walk in Jamaica since its inception in 2015 by being the first team to register and bring more than 50 participants. Other partnerships between the two nonprofits include: Provision of furniture for Kings’ Primary School and Flanker Resource Centre and partnership on the Village Academy Agriculture School.

Stewart, who was born and raised in Jamaica, graduated from Florida International University’s Hospitality Management Program in Miami. In 2009, he founded the Sandals Foundation, a nonprofit organization aimed at fulfilling the promise of the Caribbean community by improving lives and preserving its natural surroundings through investments in sustainable regional projects and programs in education, community and the environment. He currently is President of the Foundation’s Board of Directors.

The 23rd Annual Building Hope Gala will begin with cocktails and a silent auction at 6:30 p.m., followed by dinner at 8. At the event, attendees will be able to bid on additional silent auction prizes, such as a ride on the Goodyear Blimp, electronics, jewelry, vacations, and golf and dining packages.

Boca Raton native Paige Kornblue, former anchor and reporter at WPTV Ch. 5, the NBC affiliate in West Palm Beach, will serve as master of ceremonies for the event for the second consecutive year.

Kornblue lives in Boca Raton with her husband Andrew N. Hunter and their three young children. She grew up in Boca Raton and attended St. Andrew’s School, followed by the University of Michigan. In the past, she has enjoyed her role as an event emcee and volunteer for numerous organizations including The American Heart Association, American Cancer Society, Junior League of Boca Raton, Boca Raton Community Hospital and the Boca Raton Community Historical Society.

J.R. Dunn Jewelers will host a pre-event Sip and Shop event at the store, 4210 N. Federal Highway in Lighthouse Point, on Tuesday, Dec. 12, from 6:30 to 8 p.m.

Committee members include: Noelle Kahan, chairwoman; Rene Mahfood and Anastasia Taglienti, executive committee; Elena Del Alamo, Dawn DeMarco-Book, Marlene Ross Khouri, Ann Mahfood, Julie Mahfood, Kara Seelye, Renee Stetler, Joan Marie Veesaert and Patricia Wallace, host committee.

The Boca Raton Observer is the exclusive magazine sponsor.

Other gala sponsors include: American Nicaraguan Foundation, Big Green Egg, CBIZ MHM, LLC, Coral Springs Auto Mall, Crowley Liner Services, Dennis Charley & Associates, Downtown Photo, Goodyear Blimp, Carosa Furniture-Heleng International Co. Ltd., Infogroup Nonprofit Solutions, J. McLaughlin, J.R. Dunn Jewelers, Kelly Bean, Kendra Scott, MCFFE Group, LLC, Regal Products International Inc., RepowerIT, Russ Reid, Salem Media Group, The Sandals Foundation, Sandals Resorts International, Seaboard Marine, Signature Flight, Tank Weld Metals, TD Bank, TeemLink, Two Brothers, The Calmark Group, Valerie Tyson Band, Victoria L. Burrier and WATA.

For additional information regarding the Building Hope Gala, including sponsorship opportunities, and tickets, available at $300 per person, please call Special Events Manager Marni Wyman at 954-427-2222 ext. 6854 or email at Or, please visit

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

Michael Turnbell

Public Relations
954-427-2222 x 6054