It’s a home run combination as charities Carlos Beltran Foundation and Operation International join together for Rise Up Puerto Rico, a long-term project aiming to improve and rebuild the current healthcare infrastructure that was damaged by Hurricane Maria in 2017. An “Old San Juan” themed fundraising gala, Operation Rise Up, will take place on Saturday, July 27, at the Southampton Arts Center.
Carlos Beltran, who recently retired from Major League Baseball after a 20-year career, has a personal connection with Puerto Rico, as he was born in the city of Manati, there. Beltran was drafted to the Kansas City Royals in 1995 and he also played for the Houston Astros, New York Mets, San Francisco Giants, St. Louis Cardinals, New York Yankees, and Texas Rangers. Career highlights include American League Rookie of the Year in 1999 while with the Royals, AL All-Star in 2016 with the Yankees, and World Series Championship in 2017 with the Houston Astros.
Also a philanthropist, Carlos Beltran Foundation’s mission is to provide a dynamic learning experience where young people can develop and strive for academic excellence in preparation for leading responsible, and productive lives as compassionate global citizens and to empower youth to achieve their dreams through sports and education. Among its work, the foundation donated $1 million to Puerto Rico after the devastation of Hurricane Maria, and helped raise another $400,000 through an online charity drive.
Operation International is an international nonprofit established in 1996, providing free, life-saving surgeries for those across the globe. It is a United Nations-recognized charity. Medhat Allam, MD, FACS, is chairman of Operation International and a board-certified general and bariatric surgeon in Southampton, but travels to numerous countries in Africa, Asia, and South and Central America, and has operated on hundreds of patients worldwide.
With its Rise Up Puerto Rico project, the two organizations intend to work with and provide support hospitals that were hardest hit from the hurricane as part of a years-long effort.
Other special guests in attendance at the “Operation Rise Up” gala will include Neil deGrasse Tyson, famed American astrophysicist; Jack Brewer, formerly of the New York Giants and co-host of “Fox Business News”; Andres Torres, formerly of the Mets and San Francisco Giants World Series champ; Jose Reyes, former Met; Rohan Marley, son of Bob Marley; Victor Martinez, former MLB baseball designated hitter and catcher for the Cleveland Indians, Boston Red Sox, and Detroit Tigers; Helen Matsos, producer; Chuck Nice, stand-up comic, and more.
Southampton Arts Center is located at 25 Jobs Lane. There will be live music and dancing, all in the style and spirit of “Old San Juan.” Dress code encouraged, colorful for ladies, white pants and colorful shirts for gentlemen.
Tickets begin at $200 per person or $300 per couple. Purchase tickets at www.operationinternational.org/riseup.