Please help us getting through the corona virus crisis !!
My name is Marc Pomel, Managing Director of MALDIVES PASSIONS Dive School, on the local island of Maafushi.
MALDIVES PASSIONS Pvt, Ltd. has been registered as a company in July 2011, and was the achievement of a dream made 9 years previously by myself & Adham, my Maldivian business partner.
This dream was made possible thanks to a new policy from the Maldivian government (back in 2008) promoting a new type of tourism, based on local islands instead of private resort islands.
On local islands, you could be in contact with the population, interacting with them, sampling the authentic Maldivian culture and making sure that every single dollar you spent would benefit the locals instead of some big international resort companies.
MALDIVES PASSIONS was the 1st dive school to open in Maafushi, the 1st ever local island to embrace local tourism.
For almost 9 years, we managed to be ranked #1 attraction by TRIPADVISOR, to be the Award Winner of TRAVEL & HOSPITALITY, and to be the "Learning Experience of the Year" by LTG GLOBAL AWARDS.
During this time, we also got deeply involved with the local community, bringing countless unemployed youngsters to diving professional level, conducting regular beach & lagoon clean-ups with school kids & tourists, organizing fundraising for the local school, setting-up numerous marine environment awareness program (with both kids & adults), and creating a coral growing project in Maafushi’s lagoon in conjunction with the Island Council.
Unfortunately, all this is now in jeopardy, due to the current pandemic.
The international airport was closed from the 19th of March with the whole country fully quarantined, and small business like us left high & dry with no income & no help whatsoever from the government.
Furthermore, we had to move to a new place early in February, thus facing significant costs & expenses in the relocating process.
All those factors contributed to the fact that ran out of money, so from last April onward, we were not able to pay our staff anymore.
We had to temporarily lay off some of them, who returned to their home islands & families already, but 4 of our staffs (with no other place to go) were forced to remain with us in Maafushi.
Although we can't give them any salary, we are still trying to bear the cost for their accommodations, food, and the utility bills (water, electricity & internet).
Therefore, I am humbly requesting your help to face those expenses until business resume (supposedly on the 1st of November), and until we financially stable enough once more.
Here is a breakdown of the incurred costs for your information:
- Food cost is 170 USD/person/month for a total of 680 USD
- Accommodation discounted rent rate is 550 USD per month
- Average monthly water bill is around 330 USD, and electricity is about 260 USD.
- Internet fee is 70 USD/month
Therefore, we are looking at a grand total of 1890 USD/ month.
Please, help us to keep the dream alive, as without you, we will be forced to sell everything & close down MALDIVES PASSIONS permanently.
Anything you can spare & give will be very much appreciated, no matter how small your contribution.
To show you our gratitude, and as a small gesture of recognition, we will be glad to offer a free fun dive, and an additional 10% discount to any contributor coming to Maafushi.
Thank you very much for your help & kind consideration.
Marc Pomel & team.
MALDIVES PASSIONS Dive School