Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay is midsized 2017 Business Philanthropy Award winner

The people of Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay Golf Resort, Spa and Marina demonstrate exceptional commitment to the Dorchester County community, and particularly to veterans of the U.S. Armed Forces, persons with disabilities, and persons with mental health needs. Regardless of age or ability, Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay’s community initiatives focus on employment and education.

For 11 years, Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay has partnered with the Pathways to Independence program at the Cambridge South Dorchester School of Technology and the Board of Education for Dorchester County. This program teaches life- and work skills to students aged 18-21 who have a learning disability. THe students job-shadow at businesses in the Cambridge area, and apply that experience toward diploma credit.

For the last eight years, the resort has worked with the Dorchester County Infants and Toddlers Program for special needs children aged 0 – 3. Hyatt donates meeting space, food and gifts, and is a sponsor of the event, which lets families gather for a celebration with Santa.

Other Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay Golf Resort, Spa and Marina philanthropic initiatives include:

• Goodwill Industries of the Chesapeake, Inc.

• Salisbury Outstation Vet Center: This mobile unit visits veterans to assist them in life after the military. Hyatt works with the outstation by providing job shadowing and career opportunities.

• Lower Shore Friends, Inc.: This group works with individuals with mental health needs or those in need of crisis intervention.

• Delmarva Community Services-Delmarva Works: This organization helps Eastern Shore adults with disabilities find jobs.

• Maryland Promise Summer Workplace Experience: This branch of the Maryland Department of Disabilities offers after-school jobs for students between 14 and 16 years old who receive supplemental security income. In 2016, Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay was again awarded an Employer of Choice distinction for this program.

• Operation Hire Maryland: The resort hosted and sponsored the first networking event for this program, which helps veterans, active-duty service members, their families and dependents secure benefits earned through military service. Hyatt is the only hotel on the Eastern Shore to participate in this hiring effort.

• Telamon Corporation: This organization helps older adults reenter the workforce. Hyatt began a job shadowing and tour partnership with Telamon in 2015.

• Older Youth Summit, HOPE FORWARD: This organization helps foster care youth ages 18-21 prepare to leave the foster care system by exposing them to jobs and higher education opportunities.

• Benedictine’s Training Program: This program works with adults with disabilities, aged 22 and up, who live in the community or in group homes, to prepare them for work. The resort hosted various job shadows and tours for the program, which helps with functional academics; speech therapy; psychological, psychiatric and social work, counseling and case management; assistive technology; physical and occupational therapy; vocational and transitional services; and intensive collaborative programs for students on the autism spectrum.

• Chesapeake College: Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay works with the college to help J1 visa students from India, Philippines, and Eastern Europe as they adjust to American culture. The resort helps support a course in customs and language.

• Upper Shore Workforce: The resort welcomes students and clients from this organization for a career chat, tour, and lunch on the groups. Programs focus on introducing adults with disabilities to the workplace.

• Maryland Mentor Program: This program offers on-the-job training for young adults in state foster care.

• Shapiro Training and Education Partnership (STEP): This initiative is a branch of Goodwill Industries of the Chesapeake. Hyatt’s human resources department hosted a group for an informational meeting about careers in the hospitality industry.

• CHIMES: The resort partnered with this branch of the Maryland Division of Rehabilitation Program in the summer of 2016 to provide a six-week job shadow experience in support of children, adults and seniors with a ride range of challenges including severe physical and intellectual limitations, complex medical needs, and autism.

• Nause-Waiwash Pow-Wow: Hyatt supported and attended the local pow-wow of the Nause-Waiwash Band of Indians (this is the group’s preferred name). The human resource department offered on-the-spot interviews and information about hospitality careers. The resort has donated meeting space for the monthly tribal council meeting since September 2016.

In addition to this extensive community support, the Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay also undertook the following independent initiatives:

• Sponsored the printing of school folders for every Dorchester County student

• Food drive for a local backpack program (to reduce food insecurity at home)

• School supply drive

• November food collection (two locations) in partnership with the Cambridge Fire and Rescue Company

• Pet food and toy collection for local animal shelter

• Holiday toy collection for Dorchester County families in need in partnership with the Cambridge Fire Rescue Company

• Dorchester Board of Education Infants and Toddlers meeting space donation, including gifts and time with Santa

• Annual Care and Share Santa Swim Cambridge host and main supporter, donating more than $6,000 in food, beverage and meeting space and helping raise $11,000 to pay utility bills and medical needs through local social services

• Multiple fundraiser and local charity drive donations

• Associate/community wellness fair

Additionally, Hyatt supported the efforts of University of Maryland–Eastern Shore through a large grant for the Historical Black Colleges and Universities Hospitality Management Consortium for the Summer High School Bridge Program for the sixth year. Veterans@Hyatt placed wreaths on the graves of Eastern Shore veterans at the Veterans Cemetery in Hurlock, Maryland, and veteran employees sponsored an Operation We Care drive to send care packages to deployed servicemembers from the Eastern Shore.

Internally, Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay supports multiple diversity and inclusiveness awareness initiatives like Hyatt CHESA Ladies, which focuses on women’s health and personal professional growth. This group set up an on-site breastfeeding mothers’ room for working moms, earning recognition as a Breastfeeding-Friendly Workplace by the Maryland Breastfeeding Coalition. Other events include Breast Cancer Awareness Month Paint the Month Pink Campaign and Pink/Jeans Day for breast cancer awareness and community health.

Diversity initiatives include the HyPRIDE Spirit Day encouraging associates to wear purple in support of the LGBT community’s stand against harassment in schools.

The Business Philanthropy Awards are part of the Association of Fundraising Professionals National Philanthropy Day Awards. Each year, the Maryland Chamber of Commerce solicits and evaluates nominations for organizations committed to philanthropic community service. These awards are presented in collaboration with the Baltimore Business Journal.

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