Derek Haines is well on course to meet his challenge of raising $1 million for Cayman HospiceCare after collecting a check for $100,000 last week and a similar donation will soon be added to the fund.
Mr. Haines intends to run six marathons this year to raise the $1 million for a new hospice building and, thanks to the generous $100,000 from Peter Kandiah, he is meeting his target.
Mr. Kandiah is a former Rotarian. He attended a Rotary lunch at the Westin Hotel on Thursday to hand over the check to bring the total raised so far to $342,000.
There is another $100,000 pledged but Mr. Haines cannot reveal the source yet.
Also at the check presentation was Chris Duggan, chairman of Cayman HospiceCare; Stephanie Foster-Wight, president of Rotary Club of Grand Cayman; Governor Helen Kilpatrick, who is patron of Mr. Haines’s six4hospice challenge; and Mr. Kandiah’s wife Julia.
With the Paris and London marathons completed in the past few weeks, Mr. Haines said he is pleased to have got a third of the runs out of the way and reached slightly over a third of the target.
His next marathon is in Pamplona, Spain, on June 27. The final one is the Cayman marathon on Dec. 7.
He is paying all expenses for the runs out of his own pocket and all funds are being handled by Rotarian Chris Johnson.
“I’m really pleased with how it’s going,” Mr. Haines said. “I was talking to Franz Manderson [deputy governor] today and he is doing great work at getting himself fit and other civil servants and they’re going to do a 5 or 6 kilometer run with the civil service with all the money going to this fund.”
Mr. Haines said he feels very emotional about the support he is receiving and it helps lift his spirits and inspire him in tough stages of the races.
“It’s so wonderful, the support I’m getting and what I’m going to get in,” Mr. Haines said. “This is really doable. I got $100,000 today but it can be $25, everything helps.
“Mr. Kandiah and Julia have been on the island for 40 years and they wanted to mark that anniversary by helping us. He’s had this on his mind for a while and he’s a supporter of the hospice. “He came to the launch of the challenge at the governor’s residence to find out for sure that every penny donated goes to the building. That really settled it for him.”
Mr. Kandiah is an Englishman who is a semi-retired attorney and entrepreneur. He said, “My wife and I have supported Cayman HospiceCare since its inception and we think it’s a marvellous organization. Having been here for 40 years, we wanted to mark it in some way and we decided we could combine two things here, a decent donation to mark the anniversary and to ensure it goes to a good cause.
“The publicity surrounding this wasn’t of my doing, it was set up by Rotary and with a bit of luck some people might follow suit in one way or another.
“We’ve had a fantastic 40 years here, Cayman has been very good to us and this is our way of putting something back in.” The HospiceCare has $750,000 a year operational costs and Mr. Haines is glad that once the new building is completed, no rent will need to be paid, which currently costs around $70,000 a year. “That can go towards more staff,” he said.
Mr. Haines says he feels in really good shape after the 26.2 mile runs in successive weeks. “I’ve got two months before the next marathon and already feel I could run one again,” he said.