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Cayman Islands Government

Avid Fundraiser Honoured

Certificate and Badge of Honour recipient Betty Baraud

I am humbled by this award; this was never the reason for doing what I do. My driving force has been a deep desire to make a difference in someone else's life.

—Betty Baraud

Betty Baraud

Certificate and Badge of Honour

When you meet Betty Baraud, you get a glimpse of the secret of her success. It's that calm self assurance, the uncanny ability to see things as they should be, and an infectious can-do attitude.

A successful businesswoman who pioneered the recruitment and immigration consultancy services in Cayman - and who is now a member of the Immigration Review Team, her name is also synonymous with fundraising for the Cayman Islands Olympics Committee (CIOC).

For her service to the community through CIOC, Mrs. Baraud is a 2010 recipient of the Cayman Islands Certificate and Badge of Honour.

"I am humbled by this award; this was never the reason for doing what I do. My driving force has been a deep desire to make a difference in someone else's life," she noted, adding, "I could not have accomplished so much on my own, had it not been for my hardworking staff, committed peers on the CIO Fundraising Committee, and the sponsors, who are the real heroes and support the causes I hold dear, year after year. I owe this recognition to them."

Mrs. Baraud founded the CIOC's fundraising arm in 1992, after her son Stefan's quest to reach the Barcelona Games as a cyclist gave her insight into the funding needs of athletes, and the importance of engaging the community to rally behind them.

That mission to transform athletes' Olympics dream into reality led to the committee's first fundraiser, Gourmet Tour Around the World, held at the home of the then-Chief Justice, Mr. George Harre. It raised CI$65,000, and set the benchmark for future CIOC fundraising efforts.

Seventeen years later, it is estimated that she has helped to raise more than US$1 million for the CIOC, which supports athletes by funding sporting bodies.

In addition to the Gourmet Tour Around the World, now an annual event, she has organised events such as Project Runway; raffled the first ever Cayman S Porsche which raised CI$194,000 and held a world movie premier which was attended by all of its supporting actors and raised CI$140,000.

But Mrs. Baraud's commitment to the community goes beyond sports. With her own Hurricane Ivan experience in mind, in 2008 she rallied family, staff and business associates to send a trailer with generators, appliances, clothing and other relief supplies to the Sister Islands after Hurricane Paloma struck.

Her firm, Baraud International, is also a platform for her community service. Outreach activities include a computer training programme for first-time offenders at Northward Prison (1999-2005); an annual gold sponsor of the Young Caymanian Leadership Awards (YCLA) for 10 years and a gold sponsor for the 2008 Cayman Islands Empowering Women Conference.

A Rotarian with a perfect attendance record of 14 years, she organizes annually the Christmas Tree Lighting for Rotary; supports Meals on Wheels, and personally redecorated the George Town Hospital Mental Health Care Unit and provided patients with bibles, books and games.

Mrs. Baraud counts raising two sons, Stefan Baraud, Chairman of the Port Authority; and Robert Baraud, an employee at Ogier, her greatest accomplishments. "When Ivan hit, I lost everything I owned, but when I went digging through the rubble of my home, it was for the photos of my children. I have two wonderful sons," she said.

Although there are new fundraising challenges, such as the current economic climate and many more Charities now competing for the same resources, Mrs. Baraud is gearing up for another year of fundraising events, which will kick off with, "Rolling the Dice at Caesars Palace", on 12 March 2010, at the Ritz. "If Cayman is to stand on the world stage in 2012 at the Summer Olympics in England, then we have to work that much harder to raise funds to identify, train and develop world class athletes," she said.

(GIS)

For further information contact: Wosila Rochester