We often like to feature leaders in the private sector, conscious-minded corporate citizens, doing their part to support their local or global communities. This summer, one company in particular is going the extra mile: Aeroplan.
Take their member donation program. It allows members to use their Aeroplan Miles to support registered charities or provide travel assistance for people and their families with medical or other emergencies. All a member needs to do is choose a charity with an account established in its name and donate Aeroplan Miles at no cost. The program has been a real boon to Canada’s charitable sector, with members able to support a wide number of causes.
“Thanks to the generosity of our members, more than 640 million Aeroplan Miles have been donated to over 300 charitable organizations since we launched Aeroplan’s member donation program in 2006,” says Alden Hadwen, director, community engagement at Aeroplan. “Because Aeroplan joins its members in supporting these community causes, we have donated nearly the same amount in Aeroplan Miles collectively over the same period of time. These organizations work in communities not only in Canada but around the globe using Aeroplan Miles donations to help offset their travel costs including flights and hotels.”
Support on World Oceans Day
This World Oceans Day, for example, members can use their Aeroplan Miles to save marine life through Oceans Initiative. Co-founded by scientists Erin Ashe and Rob Williams, Oceans Initiative is made up of a team of scientists on a mission to protect marine life. They study whales, dolphins, sharks, salmon & seabirds in the Pacific Northwest and beyond and share their cutting-edge science to inform conservation activities. The keystone project of the Oceans Research and Conservation Association, Oceans Initiative makes valuable use of Aeoplan miles to transport scientists to remote locations and to move the whale-sized piles of field equipment they use to explore and protect the British Columbia coast.
With their work so vital right now, any additional miles could certainly come in handy. So, to mark World Oceans Day and protect marine life, from June 5 to June 11, Aeroplan will match all miles donated to Oceans Initiative up to 500,000 miles. It’s a generous act that’s not going unnoticed.
“As a small charity, our partnership with Aeroplan’s member donation program is critical to our work to protect whale and dolphin populations in Canada and around the world,” says Rob Williams.
“We use Aeroplan flight rewards to get our team into remote field sites, bring students and early career scientists to professional conferences, and champion our science at the meetings where policy-makers make real-world management decisions that affect oceans and wildlife.” He adds that they even used their donated Aeroplan miles to reduce costs of hotel stays, car rentals and to offset their carbon footprint. “This partnership allows us to direct more of our funds toward our mission.”
When a tree is more than just a tree
And from June 26 to July 2, Aeroplan will help another organization meet its mission when it will be matching all miles donated to Highway of Heroes up to 500,000 miles. When is a tree more than just a tree? It’s when the tree is part of a memorial to honour Canada’s fallen heroes. The Highway of Heroes Living Tribute Campaign is planting 117,000 trees along and near the 401, one for every one of Canada’s war dead. This living, breathing memorial, between Trenton and Toronto, offers an opportunity to tell the story of Canada’s veterans. The organization uses 100% of all funds raised toward the planting and maintenance of trees and will use miles donated for fundraising purposes and to help involve family members of fallen soldiers at the ceremonial plantings.
Fighting cancer one mile at a time
Aeroplan miles will also help Prostate Cancer Canada , the leading national foundation dedicated to the elimination of the most common cancer in men through research, advocacy, education, support and awareness. Prostate Cancer Canada’s vision is to be a global leader in the fight against prostate cancer, earning the enthusiasm and support of Canadians through integrity, compassion and innovation. From June 11 to June 25, Aeroplan will match all miles donated to Prostate Cancer Canada up to 250K miles.
And from June 12 to 18, WE will have its Miles Match Week from June 12 ‒ 18. WE (formerly known as Free The Children) is a local and global charity that partners with communities to help lift themselves out of poverty using a holistic, sustainable five-pillar development model and empowers youth to change the world. WE is one of Aeroplan’s 10 charitable partners dedicated to improving the lives and enriching communities here at home and around the world. Other partners include David Suzuki Foundation, Engineers Without Borders, Médecins Sans Frontières and the Stephen Lewis Foundation.
Did you know?
In 2017, Aeroplan donated 1 million miles to each of its partner organizations. Aeroplan also offsets 100 per cent of all carbon emissions from flights taken by its 10 member donation program partners using donated miles.
Aeroplan Members can automatically donate two per cent of all miles accumulated to any donation program partner or charity just by visiting their profile page on aeroplan.com, selecting the donation opt-in and the partner/charity they had in mind.
To donate to an Aeroplan program partner or charity, please visit: www.aeroplan.com/donate.