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HEAT, Carnival to Donate $2.5 Million to Holtz Children’s Hospital at Jackson Memorial

Apr 9 2008 10:45AM
MIAMI, Mar. 17 – As part of a unique partnership between the world’s largest cruise operator and the NBA’s premier franchise, Carnival Cruise Lines and the Miami HEAT Family Outreach Charitable Fund have pledged $2.5 million to renovate the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit and Medical Unit at Jackson Memorial Hospital’s Holtz Children’s Hospital in Miami.

The $2.5 million donation – one of the largest ever to Holtz Children’s Hospital – will enable Jackson to completely refurbish the 30,000-square-foot facility and purchase a variety of new medical equipment.

Following the renovation, the facility will be renamed the “Carnival Cares for Kids Center” and a Pediatric Medical Unit on the same floor will be named the “Miami HEAT Home Court for Kids.”

The renovations have already begun and will be completed in early 2006.

The refurbished “Carnival Cares for Kids Center” will include 30 special oversized rooms to allow family members to remain with their critically ill children, as well as medical isolation rooms for those most susceptible to germs and infections, a sophisticated new monitoring system enabling nurses to more easily monitor patients, and a warm, comfortable lounge situated so that family members can relax and rejuvenate during long days at the hospital.

In addition to these new and expanded services and equipment, the renovation will include a significant redesign of the facility, with nurses’ stations that will be closer to patients, allowing immediate and rapid response to patients’ changing conditions.

“This incredible donation is indicative of the tremendous spirit of giving that exists at both Carnival and the HEAT – two organizations that truly care about making a difference in our community,” said Silvia Fortun, president, Jackson Memorial Foundation’s Guardian Angels. “Time and time again, Carnival and the HEAT go above and beyond to help those less fortunate. On behalf of the thousands of children and families who will benefit from this modern facility – thank you.”

Commented Carnival Cruise Lines President and CEO Bob Dickinson, “While Carnival supports a wide range of charitable organizations, those that help children have a special place in our heart. Carnival is very pleased to partner with the Miami HEAT Family Outreach Charitable Fund and the Miami HEAT to fund this much-needed renovation at Jackson’s Holtz Children’s Hospital, whose tireless efforts in helping South Florida’s children have made them a highly respected member of our community.”

Chris Riley, Miami HEAT Family Outreach Charitable Fund Board member and wife of Miami HEAT President Pat Riley, stated, “As a founding board member of the Miami HEAT Family Outreach Charitable Fund, it is our goal to help at risk families in South Florida. In partnering with Carnival Cruise Lines, we are extremely honored to facilitate the recovery of seriously ill children at Jackson’s Holtz Children’s Hospital with the Miami HEAT Home Court for Kids.”

The $2.5 million donation represents both past and future financial contributions of the two entities over a five-year period and includes cash contributions from Carnival and funds raised through the Miami HEAT Family Festival, of which Jackson’s Holtz Children’s Hospital is a beneficiary and Carnival a primary sponsor.

An oversized check representing the $2.5 million donation will be presented at halftime during tonight’s HEAT vs. Lakers game at the AmericanAirlines Arena.

Funds donated by Carnival will be facilitated by the Carnival Foundation, which coordinates the company’s corporate giving efforts, while the Miami HEAT’s contribution is being facilitated through the Miami HEAT Family Outreach Charitable Fund, which encompasses charitable endeavors organized by team players, coaches and wives.