The Rotary Club of Ponte Vedra Beach and the Ponte Vedra Recorder recognized seven local residents for their contributions to the community last week at the 29th annual Local Heroes Awards. Our founders, Jim Gray & Keith Faver were recognized for their philanthropic community outreach.
Jim Gray & Keith Faver: “Ponte Vedra residents Gray and Faver and their construction company are the longtime sponsor of Wolfson Children’s Hospital’s Patrons of the Hearts. In addition to bringing more than 50 underprivileged children to Wolfson to have corrective heart surgery, the duo has provided disaster relief in the Bahamas to victims of Hurricane Dorian. Faver recalled the impact meeting the mother of one of the children who received life-saving heart surgery had on him: ‘I thought, Oh my God, this giving thing is pretty cool!’”
Jim and Keith appreciate the opportunity to spread awareness for the organizations we serve. It’s easy to support charitable causes like Patrons of the Hearts and Hope Town Rising, especially when they personally mean a great deal to the two of them.
Patrons of the Hearts is a charity that holds a special place in Jim and Keith’s hearts. The Patrons of the Hearts Foundation brings children from developing countries, who are suffering from complex congenital heart problems, to Wolfson Children’s Hospital for medical treatment.
Jim and Keith have been passionately involved in the foundation since 2005 and have grown it into a sustainable charity endowment.
Thanks to the collaboration with Wolfson Children’s Hospital and UF Health Pediatric Cardiovascular Center in Jacksonville, each $5,000 donation sponsors a surgery and can save the life of a child born with congenital heart disease who has doesn’t have access to specialized care in their home country. The first sponsored child came to Jacksonville in the spring of 2006 and since then over 126 children from 25 different countries have received state-of-the-art care.
Hope Town Rising is an organization we launched in 2019 after Hurricane Dorian hit the Bahamas and left behind a path of destruction. Dorian made landfall on Hope Town, Elbow Cay as a Category 5 hurricane, ushering in a 20-foot storm surge and packing winds in excess of 200 mph, making it the most devastating natural disaster the island has ever experienced.
Jim and Keith share more than 30 years of cherished memories with the heart and soul of the island – the people. They feel a personal responsibility to support the Hope Town Community because they are family. Our mission is to help the people of Hope Town to rise again by providing the resources and expertise needed to assist the community in recovery and rebuilding.
Our achievements and ongoing initiatives include:
- Air transportation with 8,000 pounds of medical supplies, doctors, nurses, & EMT personnel
- Establishing the Hope Town Medical Clinic
- Generators, building and roofing supplies
- Materials and support for Abaco Inn as an initial relief center
- Financial support, housing, and donated goods
- Assessment and documentation of Elbow Cay structures
- Site and architectural work for rebuilding the Teachers Cottage and School
- And a fundraising documentary