Christmas came early this year for the Tennis Federation of the Cayman Islands, with the surprise news of a major donation from two overseas firms in honor of former Cayman resident Mike Howard.
Howard, a popular long-term resident who passed away earlier this year, was a big supporter of junior tennis.
The Tennis Federation’s mini courts are named after Howard’s son Paul, who lost his life in his early teens.
Howard contributed financially to the creation of the Paul Howard courts, along with the Cayman Islands Tennis Club and the Tennis Federation of the Cayman Islands.
Howard worked at Cayman firm International Management Services for 32 years, where he was a director and company manager, as well as head of the insurance department.
The donation comes from two long-standing clients of Howard, APIC Insurance Corporation and Virginia Physicians Insurance Company, which have been managed by IMS for many years.
Tennis Federation head Eliza Harford said, “We are tremendously grateful to APIC and VPIC for their generosity, and their thoughtfulness in wishing to keep the memory of Paul Howard alive, something very close to Mike’s heart.
“The funds will be used, in Paul’s name, to continue our efforts to widen access to tennis in the Cayman Islands, in particular to children at government schools.”
With backing from local sponsors, the TFCI has organized tennis to be taught in all local primary schools in Grand Cayman and Cayman Brac in recent years.
The federation also runs the Paul Howard courts on West Bay Road, whose four mini courts are used exclusively for kids ages 10 and under. Use of the Paul Howard courts is free to all juniors. The courts are permanently open.