(CNS Local Life): Volunteers at this year’s Taste of Cayman Food and Drink Festival were recognised for their help by event organisers at a recent reception. In thanking the volunteers, Cayman Islands Tourism Association (CITA) executive director Tiffany Dixon-Ebanks said, “With this being both one of CITA’s and the Cayman Islands’ largest events, we wouldn’t have been able to have had such a successful and widely enjoyed festival without our amazing team of volunteers.
“These volunteers don’t do it for praise or accolades, but simply for our community and to help make the festival the best that it can be.
“The nearly 200 volunteers worked extremely hard, both in the weeks leading up to the event as well as on the actual night, so our volunteer party is our small way of being able to thank them for all the time and effort they put in.”
Planning has already begun for Taste of Cayman’s 30th anniversary in 2018, with Dixon-Ebanks encouraging more people to get involved in volunteering for the event.
“We are well served by the volunteers who continue to contribute to this great festival and have done so for many years. However there is always opportunity for more to join,” she said.
“There are a range of roles available, whether it’s on the frontline or those important behind the scenes roles ranging from pre-event and gate staff to bartenders and cashiers. Every single one of these roles is important and valued, and we were glad to recognise our volunteers’ invaluable contribution at the appreciation party.”
Several long-standing volunteers and supervisors received special awards to recognise their efforts.
“So many of our volunteers went above and beyond the call of duty to ensure that this year’s event was the biggest and tastiest that it has ever been,” Dixon-Ebanks said.
Taste of Cayman volunteer Jane Peck said helping at Taste of Cayman was an interesting, rewarding and fun experience. “Volunteering is a great way to give back to the Cayman community,” she said. “I feel like I am making a real difference to people’s enjoyment of the festival – all while learning new skills and making fantastic friends. Volunteering at Taste gives you an insight into what goes into organising and managing a major event.”
Peck urged others to volunteer for the next year’s festival. “In most cases, no prior experience is necessary, and training is provided,” she added.
Margaritaville hosted the reception as well as served as the volunteer sponsor for Taste of Cayman 2017. “It was our pleasure to host this year’s volunteer party to appreciate and recognise the hard working Taste of Cayman volunteers,” said Andre Boswell, senior sales and business development manager.