The Marriott Disaster Relief Fund was originally established at the Greater Washington Community Foundation in 2005 by Marriott International to help Marriott associates, their families and communities directly impacted by Hurricane Katrina. The Fund has been activated a number of times since then, most recently in August 2017 to aid recovery efforts following several natural disasters in the U.S., Caribbean and Latin America. The Fund is designed to provide immediate assistance to Marriott managed and franchised associates and communities, including for basic needs, and also supports longer-term recovery efforts. As part of the 2017 “Family Takes Care of Family” campaign to support the Marriott Disaster Relief Fund, Marriott International donated $400,000, The J. Willard and Alice S. Marriott Foundation donated $500,000, and individual donors, associates, business partners and hotel owners from around the world – from Paris to Buenos Aires to Aruba – donated about $400,000 to support the Fund. A Marriott associate shared:
“I want to contribute to this fund because [Marriott International] has a 'Spirit to Serve' and I want to be a part of that.”
The Marriott Disaster Relief Fund provided nearly $1.8 million in support for 2017 relief efforts, including:
- The distribution of food, mosquito nets, tarps, flashlights, batteries, home rebuilding supplies, toiletries and generators, among other immediate need items.
- The generation of thousands of meals in partnership with World Central Kitchen (WCK) for Puerto Rican communities in need from late 2017 through 2018. During the 2017 year-end holidays, the Fund partnered with WCK to provide 6,000 meals to Puerto Rico-based associates wearing the Marriott name badge and their families. A few weeks later, an additional 22,000 meals were provided to Puerto Rico communities in need, and from year-end 2017 through February 2018 the Fund supported additional meal generation costs into the summer.