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MAKING A DIFFERENCE – travel industry members contribute to the community


Issues & Trends – May 2014

MAKING A DIFFERENCE – travel industry members contribute to the community

Making a differenceCONQERING Everest as part of a leukaemia fundraiser … caring for African orphans … a night of madness for a good cause … initiatives to assist wildlife protection.

Those are just four of the ways in which Australian travel industry members – companies and individuals – have recently been trying to make a difference.

Year-round there are hundreds of instances of such activities. We highlight four efforts that have come to our attention this month.

• Two members of TravelManagers – Andrea Turner of Windsor in Brisbane and Michelle Thomas of Norah Head on New South Wales’ Central Coast – have climbed to the Base Camp on Mt Everest, raising funds for leukaemia research as part of “the World’s Highest Shave”.

“It was the most amazing, breath-taking, humbling, grounding, exhaust-ing and exhilarating trip, all in one,” said Turner.

Said Thomas: “With only a few weeks training I really didn’t think I would be fit enough to actually make it to the Base Camp. I can truly say my sheer determination and desire to raise funds for such an important cause was an overriding factor.”

The two personal travel managers were part of a 20-strong team that raised $49,081, all of it going directly to research and providing support to people living with leukaemia.

• African safari operator Bench International recently gave the children from the Mombasa New Hope Orphanage an opportunity to experience local wildlife in the bush over a two day visit to Satao Camp in Tsavo East National Park in Kenya.

Bench arranged for 36 orphaned children between the ages of four and 16 years old and five teachers to visit the camp and have the chance to see elephants, lion, cheetah, buffalo, and the resident herd of over 100 impala that are so tame they allow humans to be within 10 feet of them.
Hope Orphanage is one of several philanthropic interests Bench International has in Africa. It also supports Rhino Ark in Kenya, the elephant nursery at the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust in Nairobi, the Masai Nursery School near Satao Elerai and the East African Wildlife Society.

• On the home front, China Southern Airlines and Accor Hotels were prominent participants in the fun at Sydney’s “Cure Brain Cancer” annual gala event, this year themed The Mad Hatter’s Ball.

The Mad Hatter's BallHelping to support Dr Charlie Teo’s world-renowned endeavours to cure brain cancer, the airline and the hotel chain provided an auction prize that included business class flights to Guangzhou and on to New York with accommodation at the Sofitel Hotels in each destination, tickets to the Billy Joel concert in NYC and a meeting with the piano man himself. 

The prize was auctioned for $28,000, contributing to the $1.1million raised for the cause on the night. 

• Intrepid Travel claims to be leading the way in animal protection in the tourism industry, announcing that it has ended elephant rides and visits to entertainment venues on its trips. This follows three years of research conducted by the World Society for the Protection of Animals (WSPA) with the support of Intrepid.

Said Intrepid co-founder Geoff Manchester: “The issues are complex around animals in captivity, which is why Intrepid has been partnered with WSPA … While we once included elephant rides or entertainment venue visits, we’re now working with rehabilitation and sanctuary facilities.”

Over the past 10 years, The Intrepid Foundation, Intrepid Travel’s not-for-profit fund, has donated more than AUD$320,000 to animal and wildlife conservancy projects.

 

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