The Cayman Islands Olympic Committee has promoted local athletes over the years, raising the funds necessary to get them to that most revered of athletic competitions: the Olympic Games.
The cost of training an athlete to make them eligible for the Olympics is extraordinarily high and then there are the travel expenses to consider. There is no doubt that when the Cayman Islands flag is seen at the opening ceremonies, hearts back home swell with pride, but it is a long road to that moment, paved with hard work, commitment and the financial support of companies and private individuals.
Last Saturday, the committee held its “Luncheon at Windsor Castle” fundraiser at Abacus in Camana Bay to a sold-out crowd. Women certainly brought the garden to the garden party in colourful hats and dresses whilst the few men in attendance stuck with a fairly muted traditional palette.
A fashion show was the first item on the programme, featuring fashions from top boutiques Sand Angels, Funky Monkey and NKY. The audience was also treated to a live performance by Papie Conolly and some interesting catwalk moves by Truman Bodden.
Donald McLean, president of the committee, got up to say a few words at the beginning of the lunch, reiterating the importance of sending local athletes to the Olympics and asking people to please be generous with their support.
Later in the programme, a live auction was held including some Harrods Diamond Jubilee items, travel packages and autographed memorabilia. A cap signed by both Brett and Shaune Fraser, Cayman’s shining stars of swimming, went for nearly triple its value. Clearly, they had a lot of fans in the audience.
Although it was a warm day, spirits were not dampened and many people bid for the lots up for grabs. Clearly, there were good sports here in Cayman, not just at the upcoming Summer Olympics in July.