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Ironman Allocates $100,000 For Donation Toward Gulf Coast Oil Spill Relief

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WTC has announced that they will be contributing $100,000 to support revitalization efforts in the Gulf Coast Region. The area, which hosts several triathlons in a year, has seen many of its beaches and fishing areas closed over the last weeks since the oil spill began. The money will come from the group’s charitable organization, The Ironman Foundation, and will go directly towards  assistance for the fishermen.

The complete press release is provided below:

World Triathlon Corporation, owner of the global Ironman Triathlon Series, announces its contribution to the oil spill relief effort in the Gulf of Mexico. The Ironman Foundation, the company’s charitable arm, has earmarked a total of $100,000 to support the efforts and its first donation of $25,000 will be made to Catholic Charities Archdiocese of New Orleans, an organization that has been instrumental in assisting those affected by the oil spill in the state of Louisiana. Ironman, headquartered off Florida’s West coast, plans to offer additional assistance to related organizations in the coming weeks.

President and CEO of Ironman, Ben Fertic comments, “My family has been in Florida for six generations and I am devastated by the BP oil spill and the ongoing destruction it is causing not only to the environment, but also to the families whose livelihoods are dependent upon the Gulf of Mexico. As a company, we are always looking for unique ways to help preserve the natural resources in our host communities. We believe our contribution to Catholic Charities Archdiocese of New Orleans will offer direct support to the fishing and shrimping families in their time of need. We look forward to providing additional aid to clean-up efforts around the Gulf Coast and hope these types of donations will have a meaningful impact.”

Catholic Charities Archdiocese of New Orleans is an umbrella agency with 45 programs delivering health and human services to the poor and vulnerable in the 8 civil parishes of the Archdiocese of New Orleans. Just days after the spill, Archbishop Gregory Aymond, Catholic Charities co-president Gordon Wadge, Second Harvest CEO Natalie Jayroe and a CCANO disaster response team, met with government leaders in Plaquemines and St. Bernard Parishes. By the first week of May, Catholic Charities was offering assistance in both St. Bernard and at two oil spill relief centers in Plaquemines Parish. In just a few short weeks, the number of Catholic Charities’ centers around New Orleans now totals five. To date, the organization has provided emergency assistance to more than 2,300 families, served 952 food boxes, given more than $140,000 in gift cards/food vouchers and counseled more than 700 individuals.

“One-hundred percent of this donation from The Ironman Foundation will go directly to assistance for the fishermen. The fishermen of Southeast Louisiana are a strong, resilient and independent group who are accustomed to providing for themselves and their families. The threat of losing not only their livelihood, but also our culture and way of life has been a tremendous blow. We deeply appreciate the commitment from one strong group to another,” said Gordon Wadge, co-president of Catholic Charities Archdiocese of New Orleans.

The Ironman Foundation has raised more than $3,500,000 through various initiatives, including a charitable eBay auction, since its inception in 2003. Throughout the last eight years, the Foundation has provided charitable assistance with donations and grants being received by a variety of local and worldwide organizations such as: The Pediatric Cancer Foundation, C Different, The American Cancer Society, American Diabetes Association, American Red Cross, American Heart Association, Big Brothers/Big Sisters, Boy Scouts of America, among others.