Fairmont General Managers Meeting Gives $10,000 USD to Operation Smile
London 8th February 2013 – Fairmont Hotels & Resorts has a long history of social and environmental consciousness that extends both behind the scenes and to everyday guest experiences. For more than two decades, the luxury hotel brand has worked with clients, colleagues and community partners to ensure that every guest can have a positive impact on their destination when they visit. Fairmont’s Meetings that Matter programme is just one of the ways the brand brings corporate social responsibility into the meeting room, giving groups the opportunity to make a difference through charitable donations and group volunteer activities. As a testament to the brand’s commitment to the programme, the annual General Managers meeting, held this January in the UAE, made a $10,000 USD donation to Operation Smile. Operation Smile provides life-changing surgeries to children with facial deformities and is the charity of choice for Fairmont Bab al Bahr and Fairmont The Palm, where the meeting was held.
Through Meetings That Matter, planners booking a new 2013 meeting with a minimum of 50 room nights may donate 10 per cent of the room revenue generated by the event to a charity of choice. For a more hands-on approach, planners can book innovative teambuilding activities that get their attendees involved in the local community. Groups can volunteer to clean up waterways, lend a helping hand to local school children, support local craftspeople and much more. To learn more, planners can visit fairmont.com/promotions/meetingsthatmatter/.
Opportunities for groups to give back include:
The Special Commune is a not-for-profit organisation in China whose mission is to empower intellectually challenged youths to be part of their community. Through internships on their organic farm, students learn job and life skills that allow them to live independently. At Fairmont Beijing, a corporate outing can be designed as either a half or full-day programme, including a visit to the farm to meet the students, a student performance and contribution to a current project.
Makkah Clock Royal Tower in Saudi Arabia offers many opportunities for groups to give back. The on-going Feel your Senses programme supports people who are visually impaired by giving them the financial assistance they need to regain their sight. The programme supports their medical costs and after the procedure, the patient will come to the hotel to rest, recover and remove their bandages and enjoy the view of the Holy Haram.
Fairmont Washington D.C. offers a Volunteer at the DC Central Kitchen programme where attendees can spend a half-day at DC Central Kitchen (DCCK) assisting in a variety of programmes such as helping the kitchen prepare over 4,000 meals each day, going to local farms to pick fresh produce to prepare nutritious meals for clients, preparing and donating sack lunches, snack bags or toiletry kits or serving breakfast at street locations in the District. Through job training, meal distribution and supporting local food systems, DCCK is building long-term solutions for the interconnected problems of poverty, hunger and homelessness.
Dress for Success assists disadvantaged women with job placement and is a popular partner of The Fairmont Olympic Hotel in Seattle. The mission of Dress for Success is to promote the economic independence of disadvantaged women by providing professional attire, a network of support and the career development tools to help women thrive in work and in life. Groups can work with the hotel to organise clothes drives for this popular organisation.
A half-day Habitat for Humanity programme at The Fairmont Winnipeg tackles the final steps involved in turning a new house into a home. Groups will complete landscaping, painting and other minor household projects to prepare the homes for new families from March until November. Planners can also arrange activities where guests spend 3 hours preparing and serving meals at the Winnipeg Harvest Food Bank or Siloam Mission Food Bank.
The Fairmont Sonoma Mission Inn & Spa, Fairmont San Jose, Fairmont San Francisco, & Fairmont Newport Beach offer a Habitat for Humanity half-day programme designed to tackle the many finishing touches needed to complete a new home. Groups will complete landscaping, painting and other minor household projects to prepare the homes for new families.
Groups at Fairmont Chateau Laurier in Ottawa can make a difference by Serving at the Ottawa Mission. Established in 1906, the Ottawa Mission is a non-profit, faith-based ministry, meeting the needs of the homeless and those at risk of being homeless in the Ottawa region. Groups can volunteer at the Ottawa Mission both on and off site. One on-site option is the popular Sandwich Making Programme, while an off-site option would be a community fundraiser, such as helping to organise a cake sale or clothing or warm sock drive. During the winter months, groups in the community often collect donations of much needed items like hats, gloves, warm socks, long underwear and toiletries.
With the King Arthur Bread Baking programme at The Fairmont Copley Plaza, attendees can bake bread for a local shelter. The King Arthur, Baking Education Centre, a New England organisation assists corporate groups with preparing bread which the hotel then bakes and donates to a local shelter or food bank of the group’s choice. A presentation can be made at donation site or at the hotel.
Groups at The Fairmont Empress in Victoria can help collect and donate food for Vancouver Island’s largest food bank, Mustard Seed, either through the hotel’s quarterly food drives or as an organisation. Opportunities also exist to assist the organisation in serving of Christmas Dinner to 1,500 homeless and needy people. Delegates can also help build a home for a low-income family with Habitat for Humanity. A half-day programme designed to complete the final steps in creating a new home, attendees will complete landscaping, painting and other minor household projects to prepare the homes for new families.
The Amazing Race at The Fairmont Jasper Park Lodge gets attendees out into the great outdoors for a challenging game of wit, skill and determination. Teams are provided with everything they need to discover the local environment by finding a series of Amazing Race Stops. At each stop teams complete challenges that allow them to raise funds through interaction with the public. The goal is to be the largest fund raising group. All of the funds raised are donated to the Jasper Food Bank.
Interval House Shelter in Toronto strives to help women in abusive situations get back on their feet by offering emergency shelter and community-based services. A programme has been developed at The Fairmont Royal York to donate gently used soft goods including towels, sheets, mattresses and pillows and groups can assist in this effort to support transitional housing needs by organising a collection for gently used clothing and furnishings.
The Greater Vancouver Food Bank Society (GVFBS) was established in 1982 when many small organisations, church groups and concerned citizens joined together in response to the hunger crisis during the economic recession in 1981. The purpose of the GVFBS was to be a temporary social service provider; however, because the number of those suffering from hunger problems has continued to increase, the GVFBS has become one of the most important non-government funded food assistance providers in Canada. Groups at The Fairmont Hotel Vancouver can volunteer their time with the group for a half day activity where they can assist with general tasks at the bank, such as sorting food and goods.
The Fairmont Dallas offers half-day programmes for guests in partnership with the Autism Treatment Center, an organisation the hotel has supported for many years. During summer months, groups can host a spectacular pool party for residents of the centre, complete with a full barbecue, snacks and ice cream on the hotel’s sprawling rooftop terrace. During the winter holiday season, groups can donate gifts such as clothes and toys to the residents of the Autism Treatment Center. Groups also have the option to assist by personally delivering the presents to the centre along with a group of dedicated hotel colleagues.
The Fairmont Vancouver Airport partners with a number of charities including the Richmond Food Bank Society, which is always striving to share with neighbours in need. Groups that book meetings are now able to notify the hotel of their interest in helping the Richmond Food Bank Society execute an hour, half day, or full day of packing, sorting and distributing goods to families who need help.
Lending a Hand to the Environment
The new Fairmont Pacific Rim is committed to protecting Vancouver’s environment, and partners with the Stanley Park Ecology Society to promote awareness of and respect for the natural world. The Stanley Park Tour is a half-day programme designed to provide an engaging and informative experience about some of the fascinating aspects of Stanley Park, while gaining a greater appreciation for the natural world at the Fairmont Pacific Rim’s doorstep. Attendees will have the opportunity to have a close look at one of the largest great blue heron colonies in the province, learn about the multitude of waterfowl inhabiting Stanley Park, walk through the forest and discover gigantic cedar trees and how they have helped shape the way of life for Coastal First Nations communities, consider the impact of windstorms and other natural events on the forests and wildlife of the park, explore the biofiltration wetland and discover the role it plays in restoring the ecological balance of Lost Lagoon and learn about the extraordinary experiences of women of diverse heritage who played a crucial role in Stanley Park’s history. The suggested donation of $10 per person will go to the Society’s mission of playing a leadership role in the stewardship of Stanley Park.
Fairmont Bab al Bahr in Abu Dhabi gives guests the opportunity to participate in two international celebrations for the environment each year. For Earth Hour, held annually in late March, the hotel works with the World Wildlife Federation and Emirates Wildlife Society in developing an initiative to reduce energy consumption by hosting a 24-hour cycle-a-thon in the lobby where participants cycle on static bikes to create sufficient energy to power a TV screen displayed in the lobby. A percentage of donations from the dinners purchased on Earth Hour are provided to WWF and Emirates Wildlife Society. For Earth Day, April 22, a Beach Clean-Up is organised on the shores of the Abu Dhabi Creek around the Hotel.
The Ras Al Khor Wildlife Sanctuary in Dubai is a wetland reserve renowned for its large numbers of migratory birds, including over 500 Greater Flamingos. It is located, as the name in Arabic suggests, at the cape of the creek and is one of the few urban protected areas in the world. Fairmont Dubai offers rare opportunities to experience this delicate and bio diverse ecosystem for two hours at a time. The hotel also offers a Beach Clean-Up activity from October – December where guests can assist with the clean-up and beautification of the city’s natural resources.
In Hamburg, Fairmont Hotel Vier Jahreszeiten offers half day Shore Clean-Up programmes at the Inner Alster Lake or historic River Elbe, two of the city’s main attractions. Additionally, a Local Food Bank half day programme allows attendees to prepare and distribute care packages for homeless people and people in need.
The Fairmont Waterfront works with a number of partners to help keep Vancouver green and groups that want to lend a hand can get involved with a number of initiatives. With the Evergreen programme attendees can help by planting trees, shrubs and wildflowers in public spaces. Or they can go to historic Stanley Park and help remove the rapidly spreading English Ivy that threatens to smother native vegetation and compromise natural shelter and food sources for wildlife with the Ivy Busters programme.
The Fairmont Banff Springs offers a Trail Clean Up programme with Parks Canada in Banff National Park. Groups can collect waste on the trails and recreation areas, wearing Banff National Park volunteer t-shirts and baseball caps. A high ranking representative of the National Park can be arranged to welcome the group and thank them for their efforts. Parks Canada is also able to print an official Donation/Volunteer Appreciation document.
Grant Park encompasses 319 acres along Chicago’s waterfront and the Fairmont Chicago, Millennium Park and Grant Park Conservancy are working to enhance and beautify the area with group volunteers.
The Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise offers a unique programme where groups can help restore a native species to this stunning landscape. The Upper Corral Creek Basin Westslope Cutthroat Trout Restoration in Banff National Park will not only recover this local species that is under imminent threat but help to return the aquatic ecosystem of the Upper Corral Creek Basin to a natural, balanced state. The Westslope Cutthroat Trout is a native species that was once abundant in the Lake Louise area but is now threatened after decades of human activities such as angling, stocking of non-native fish for human benefit and habitat destruction. Only a few kilometres away from the Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise, the restoration site has excellent trail access and can be easily reached by people with a reasonable level of fitness. This opens up great opportunities for volunteering such as helping to catch and release for DNA sampling, monitoring the condition of the cutthroat trout that have been caught and are waiting to be DNA tested, helping with DNA collection, GIS mapping of the creek basin, angling to assist in the removal of non-native brook trout.
The Adopt-A-River Scheme is an innovative and educational two-hour clean-up event along the foreshore of the River Thames just across from The Savoy, A Fairmont Hotel. Together with a team from the conservation charity, Thames21, attendees are given a health and safety briefing and provided with all the necessary equipment, protective boots and gloves before diving in. The Thames21 team help to identify the wildlife and any historical artefacts that might be found. All rubbish collected is removed by boat at the end of the event. The views of St Paul’s Cathedral, Big Ben, Millennium Wheel and the Houses of Parliament and of course, The Savoy are breath taking.
Day in the Dirt is a half-day programme at The Plaza in New York where guests can participate in volunteer projects with the Central Park Conservancy. This is a unique opportunity for groups to promote employee volunteerism, foster camaraderie and support engagement with Central Park and the Conservancy. Projects include clean-up, planting, bench painting and maintenance assistance.
Montréal is the only city in North America to have a mountain in the heart of its downtown district, and Les Amis de la Montagne is a non-profit organisation committed to preserving ‘Mount Royal’. The Environmental Stewardship Programme is one of their Conservation Activities and works with Fairmont The Queen Elizabeth to offer group activities such as litter collection in the forest undergrowth, planting of indigenous trees and shrubs, establishing the growth and survival rate of previous tree plantings, cutting of invasive species that affect the biodiversity of Mount Royal’s forests.
The beautiful collection of Islands right off the cities coast makes up Boston Harbour Islands National Park. With over 1,600 acres and 35 miles of undeveloped ocean shoreline, the National Parks services puts in a conscious effort to protect the land and their associated resources. Fairmont Battery Wharf employees, hotel guests, and group attendees can volunteer their time for the Boston Harbor Islands Group Stewardship Program, which has an active focus in beach clean-up, trails and grounds maintenance, control of invasive plants, painting or other light construction projects.
Fostering Happy, Healthy Kids & Communities
The Fairmont Chateau Whistler’s Higher Ground Biker Build-Off programme lets attendees build a bike, race it and raise a deserving child’s spirits. Working together, teams acquire the bike parts they need to construct their masterpiece. They then theme and parade their creations to the judges, finishing off with a big race. When a champion has been declared, teams donate their creations to kids for whom owning a bike is otherwise impossible.
At the Fairmont Monte Carlo, kids are in the spotlight. For the Monegasque “Red Nose” event, put on by “Les Enfants de Frankie” association – which helps sick children and children in need – the Fairmont Monte Carlo has created an original and tasty cocktail without alcohol, rich in fruity and sunny flavours. Named “Frankie”, it is served in a flute with a straw set with a “mini red nose” in chocolate, a symbol of the clown. In honour of this famous character of the Principality of Monaco, this cocktail, available at the “Saphir 24, lounge & bar”, costs only €7 and €1 is donated to the association. Additionally, meetings looking for a volunteer component can organise tree planting activities, beach clean-ups and Charitable runs and walks through Monaco.
In Nairobi, Fairmont The Norfolk works with the Better Life Children’s Home & Tapa Trust Home on a programme that supports less fortunate children living in slums, who are orphaned or vulnerable. Groups are invited to donate and distribute food, toiletries, clothing, books and stationery.
At Fairmont Zimbali Resort groups can learn about and be involved in the local Zulu community. Groups can support local artists by employing a local Zulu traditional dance group to provide entertainment. They perform traditional dances and also offer interactive storytelling and dance lessons. The resort also works with local beaders to provide beaded gifts that can be used for themed guest amenities or ordered by corporate and incentive groups as gifts for their delegates.
In the Philippines, Fairmont Makati allows groups to support The Tuloy Foundation, which has been serving street children since 1993 in Metro Manila. This group helps abandoned youth find a home, direction and skills for a better future. The hotel’s on-going support for this organisation includes monetary donations as well as in kind donations such as rice and Christmas baskets.
Fairmont Jaipur has partnered with LAADLI for the betterment of street children in India. The hotel has close ties to the group, which encourages youth education and vocational training. Since opening the hotel, the partnership has continued to grow, and now includes opportunities for guests and groups to get involved in various aspects of this charity to help local children.
For a comprehensive look at Fairmont’s meeting offerings, visit fairmontmeetings.com or contact Global Events & Meetings Solutions, a dedicated resource for meeting planners available at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information or reservations, please call 00 800 0441 1414 or visit www.fairmont.com.