The Marco Island Marriott Beach Resort and Spa participated in the corporation’s annual Spirit to Serve Day on Wednesday, May 16th. On this day, every Marriott around the world took part in some form of service to its community. The Marco Island Marriott chose to provide lunch to members of the Marco Island and Isles of Capri Fire Rescue Departments and the Marco Island Police Department.
“Serving our first responders is a great way to give back to these people who give so much to us,” explains Chris Major, General Manager of Golf. “This is why we chose to servethem lunch for our Spirit to Serve Community Day.”
As explained in an open letter by Marriott CEO, J.W. Marriott, Jr., “Marriott’s ‘spirit to serve’ our customers, employees and communities is an important part of our company culture and has become recognized around the world.” The spirit aspect is what truly makes this pledge unique. Each Marriott is comprised of a Spirit to Serve Committee. Marco Island’s Marriott is no different. Led by Chris Major, each member of the committee is on some type of leadership or volunteer board within the community.
Marco Island Marriott General Manager, Rick Medwedeff, echoes these sentiments. “Asa global company, the Spirit to Serve is incorporated in everything we do. We have a responsibility to be active members in the community. We partner with the local YMCA, Rookery Bay, Marco Island Academy Charter High School and the American Cancer Society.” That’s just to name a few. “We have also adopted a portion of US-951 to take care of,” adds Medwedeff.
This falls in line with J.W. Marriott’s ultimate message. “Working with charitable organizations, we are serving our communities through these signature issues: Shelter and food, Environment, Readiness for hotel careers, Vitality of children and Embracing diversity and people withdisabilities.”
While the Spirit to Serve sentiment is carried on throughout the year, the international day in which all Marriott’s participate is May 16th. Marco Island Marriott’s service did not stop here. Throughout the week, employees volunteered their time with a different organization each day of the week. “On Monday we worked with Habitat for Humanity and then with the Harry Chapin Food Bank on Tuesday,” adds committee chair, Matt Marshall. Thursday consisted of a Blood Drive at the Marriott while employees received free car washes on Friday. “These are all fun to take part in and they also help to gainawareness within the community.”
“It’s very rewarding,” adds Medwedeff. “Each member of the Spirit to Serve committee has found something they are passionate about.”
Larry Dulski, Director of Finance for the Marriott, agrees. As a member of Drug Free Collier and the Optimist Club, Dulski explains, “this is the fun part of my job. To get out of the office and do something with the community is extremely rewarding.”
Serving up hot dogs, hamburgers, coleslaw, chips and all the fixings, employees were all smiles, as were the first responders. The afternoon luncheon and full week of volunteerism proves that the Marco Island Marriott’s Spirit to Serve has never been stronger.