Charity at Sea

Today is Good Friday and I thought I would tell you about something good. Holland America has done a number of charitable projects during the course of this Grand World Voyage. The first thing was the Walk for a Cause in which Holland America gave everyone a T-shirt for a donation to support cancer research and participation in a walk. Then, there was an auction of donated items that raised money for a children’s program in Mumbai. Examples of donated items were four nights in one of the suites, a private tour of the bridge, and water color painting done during the cruise.

Today was the big day for the Linus Project. The Linus Project is Holland America’s program of giving blankets to terminally ill children in Seattle, the company’s home base in the US. Orlando Ashford, the president of Holland America, and Captain Jonathan Mercer were present for a photograph with this year’s blankets and the people who produced them. When the trip is over, I will have crocheted two, the first of which is the yellow and gray sampler I am holding in the first photograph. The second photo shows my blanket in the midst of over two hundred others.

After communion at church this morning and the photograph with Mr Ashford and the blankets, I attended a lecture on the things that make diamonds rare and special if you are considering them as an investment. At the beginning of the lecture, Mr. Ashford gave an understated testimony to what he values, that being faith and family. No wonder Holland America does what it does and has such loyal employees.

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