From support for sick or impoverished members of society to conservation campaigns, Royal Resorts has an enduring commitment to the community. Behind the scenes, this Cancun pioneer has quietly been helping those in need for over 30 years and has always been there in times of crisis. Through the Royal Resorts Foundation (Fundacion Royal Resorts A.C.) it is now seeking more ways to give back to society by promoting health and education, contributing to sustainable development in Quintana Roo, and by protecting wildlife.

For many years, Royal Resorts has supported a variety of social causes including orphanages, shelters for the victims of domestic violence and charities for handicapped children. It is a regular contributor to the Red Cross, the Cancun-based conservation NGO Amigos de Sian Ka’an A.C., Grupo Desafio A.C. Cancer Relief and the Ciudad de la Alegria A.C. (City of Joy), a community center on the outskirts of Cancun comprising a hospice, old folks home, school, orphanage, a women’s refuge and food distribution center.

The Royal Resorts Foundation (Fundacion Royal Resorts, A.C.) was established in 2006 to give continuity to this philanthropic work and extend its coverage, enabling it to benefit more and more people and combat the threats facing the area’s fragile ecosystems. The Royal Resorts Foundation has chosen four key issues to be the beneficiaries of its fundraising initiatives, they are as follows:

Education for Children
Despite universal access to public primary and secondary education in Mexico, as a result of extreme poverty, many children still miss out on school altogether or are forced to abandon their studies to help support their families. In an attempt to address this problem in Cancun and surrounding areas, the Ciudad de la Alegria opened the Mano Amiga School in 2009 to give marginalized children the opportunity to study and for a better life.

Thanks to donations from local companies including Royal Resorts, the school now has 1,050 eager students on its roll. Children are studying in a safe and happy environment, eating the nutritious meals that are so important for their physical and intellectual development, and have regular health check-ups. They are being given a chance to enjoy their childhood and fulfill their potential.

The goal of the Royal Resorts Foundation is to raise $30,000 US and provide scholarships for 144 students! Just imagine helping so many children fulfill their academic potential and pursue their dreams. This is a way to transform lives.

The Fight against Cancer
Cancer rates are on the increase in many parts of the world but in Mexico they are alarming. It is estimated that one in 11 women in Cancun will be diagnosed with breast cancer at some point in their lives and nationally ten women die from the disease every day. Cervical-uterine cancer is the second cause of death in Mexico among women over the age of 25 and the state of Quintana Roo has one of the highest incidences in the country. Human Papillomavirus is also on the rise, especially among young girls.

Unfortunately, cancer awareness is still low in southeast Mexico, particularly in rural communities, and many women do not get the early screening which is routine in other countries. Ignorance, fear, distance from clinics and inability to pay for medical studies all play their part. As a result, when women fall ill and finally seek help, their cancer is full-blown. Being diagnosed with this terrible disease is devastating but how much more so when you have no one to turn to and no money to pay for the life-saving treatment you so desperately need?

Help is at hand. Founded in 1999 by a group of women who have all fought their own battles with cancer, Grupo Desafio de Quintana Roo A.C. started life as a support network for breast cancer patients. Its mission is now to help all those living with cancer, regardless of sex, age or type of cancer. Since 2004, it has been the Quintana Roo state representative of the AMLCC (Asociacion Mexicana de la Lucha Contra el Cancer), the Mexican Cancer Association.


The group gives seminars on cancer, risk factors and the importance of early detection in colleges, the workplace and to community groups in Cancun, Leona Vicario and parts of the Riviera Maya. They aim to discredit taboos anbout the dreaded “c” and spread the word that the disease is curable if caught in time. Their message is reinforced with a twice-yearly Crusade against Breast Cancer, which takes place in May to coincide with Mother’s Day and in October for World Cancer Day.

Cancer prevention seminar - Grupo Desafío

Grupo Desafío members

The Royal Resorts Foundation is supporting Grupo Desafio de Quintana Roo, A.C., so that it can redouble its efforts against cancer and promote a culture of prevention. The goal is to raise money to pay for cancer screening for patients from the poorest sectors of society, giving them the weapons they need to combat the disease and a second chance for life. The sum of $30,000 US will provide 250 mammograms, 300 APE studies for prostate cancer and 250 HPV vaccinations for suspected cases of Human Papillomavirus.

Saving the Mayan Jungle
Covering wide swathes of the Yucatán Peninsula, Chiapas, northern Guatemala and Belize, the Great Mayan Jungle is an ecological treasure house, widely regarded as one of the world’s biodiversity hotspots and an important green lung. Yet its riches are under threat from urban sprawl, deforestation, forest fires and pollution.

The Royal Resorts Foundation has joined a regional initiative launched by Amigos de Sian Ka’an and the Mexican National Forestry Commission (CONAFOR) to safeguard four million hectares of tropical forest in the state of Quintana Roo not currently protected by reserves. And the goal of this campaign goes far beyond safeguarding the jungle and its rare inhabitants such as the jaguar and tapir. Beneath the forest floor, deep in the rock, lies a network of underground rivers –the longest and most complex discovered to date anywhere in the world. This vast aquifer is the only source of fresh water in the limestone landscape of the Yucatán Peninsula and is also Mexico’s most important water resource for future generations. The jungle must be protected and urban pollution prevented in order to keep the water pure.

The Royal Resorts Foundation aims to raise $30,000 US to enable Amigos de Sian Ka’an to purchase and thus protect 5,000 acres of forest and the species that inhabit it. Such actions help increase carbon capture and offset the devastating effects of climate change. For every peso raised by the Royal Resorts Foundation and other supporters of the Amigos de Sian Ka’an campaign, the Mexican Government has pledged to donate another peso through the National Forestry Commission (CONAFOR).

Relief in Times of Need
The Royal Resorts Foundation intends to support the Royal Resorts Employee Relief Fund and offer a helping hand to staff in times of crisis.

The fund was established after Hurricane Gilbert in 1988 to aid staff whose homes had been destroyed or seriously damaged by the powerful storm, and reactivated in 2005 in the wake of Hurricane Wilma when 283 employees sought assistance. It has since evolved to help staff cope with grave illnesses, major surgery, accidents and to provide care for the terminally ill. Aid is given on a case-by-case basis and alleviates the burden on the household at a time when problems seem insurmountable. The goal of the Royal Resorts Foundation is to raise $30,000 US for the fund.

Royal Resorts’ Ongoing Support for Conservation and Sustainable Development
The fundraising initiatives of the Royal Resorts Foundation complements the causes already supported by Royal Resorts such as the Amigos de Sian Ka’an campaigns for the protection and study of the Yucatan’s wild cats, including the elusive jaguar, and Children & Nature, a project to help Mayan craftsmen and their families. By purchasing Children & Nature handmade wood and seed bracelets from The Royal Market and La Paloma Gift Shop, members and guests are supporting sustainable development in the Mayan communities of central Quintana Roo.

The Royal Resorts Foundation is also offering aid to CANDI (Cats and Dogs International), a nonprofit organization for the protection of stray dogs and cats in Mexico and the Caribbean. Through a combination of spay and neuter operations, adoption and education programs, it is able to save the lives of thousands of animals every year and find loving homes for them. CANDI works with local NGOs in Cancun and brings down volunteer vets to work with local vets at clinics twice a year.

How can you help?
We invite Royal Resorts members and guests to join us in supporting the Royal Resorts Foundation, it is an opportunity to give something back to this wonderful area we all call home and the people that make our time here so special. By making a donation you will be helping the community, changing lives and preserving the area’s natural heritage for future generations. There are a number of ways that you can show your support: leave a contribution in the collection boxes at the Front Desk, add a donation to your Club bill at the end of your stay or send a wire transfer from your bank back home. Every little helps. And if you would like to volunteer, donate equipment or even organize your own fundraiser, the Royal Resorts Foundation would love to hear from you.

Visit for more information on ways to donate and campaign updates.

Jaguar featured  photo courtesy of Amigos de Sian Ka’an © Florian Schulz/ILCP