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The Air Canada Foundation Continues to Support Thousands of Children and Families Across Canada
  • 2019 a record-breaking year for the Air Canada Foundation.
  • Thanks to the tremendous support of generous partners and employees.

MONTREAL, Aug. 10, 2020 /CNW Telbec/ - The Air Canada Foundation is proud to announce today, as part of its annual 2019 impact report, that following its record-breaking fundraising year, it has donated to date more than $2.4 million, to charitable organizations for programs dedicated to the health and well-being of children and youth in Canada.

"All of us at Air Canada are extremely proud of the positive effect the Air Canada Foundation is having, working through its tremendous partners to promote the well-being of children in our local communities. During these difficult times needs are greater than ever and we are determined to overcome the challenges of COVID-19 so that we can continue to serve local communities and contribute to the social and economic health of our country. We believe that in business, you do well by doing good and we take this very much to heart", said Calin Rovinescu, President and CEO of Air Canada.

Despite these unprecedented times, which has resulted in the cancellation of its key fundraising activities, in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Air Canada Foundation is pursuing its efforts to support communities and help Canadian families in need in different ways, by providing in-kind support and making meaningful connections:

  • Following the tragic events in Beirut, Lebanon, the Foundation launched a fundraising campaign with its employees to provide humanitarian aid. Donations will be sent to The Canadian Red Cross, one of Air Canada's humanitarian partners. Funds will go to the Lebanon Humanitarian Needs Appeal to support the Lebanese Red Cross that helps people through its ambulance services, medical centres, mobile clinics and disaster response units.
  • The Foundation worked closely with the Canadian food rescue organization Second Harvest to redistribute fresh food items from Air Canada's in-flight kitchens as the airline suspended the majority of its international and U.S. transborder flights as a result of the crisis. From April to end of July, nearly 246,000 kg of food was redistributed, which represents the equivalent of 174,000 meals. The diversion from landfill also represents an approximate greenhouse gas reduction of 253 tCO2e.
  • Air Canada Cargo and the Air Canada Foundation recently brought industry partners together, including Drone Delivery Canada (DDC), the Pontiac Group and long-time charitable partner GlobalMedic, as well as generous donors, to deploy a patented drone delivery solution to the Beausoleil First Nation (BFN) community in Ontario. A ground-breaking project that provides a rapidly implementable solution to an immediate problem for the First Nation: maintaining a steady stream of medical supplies that are critical in the fight against COVID-19, while also limiting person-to-person contact.

Through financial contributions and other in-kind support, the Air Canada Foundation is assisting 315 charitable organizations and 396 fundraisers. The Foundation also worked closely with the Canadian Red Cross and GlobalMedic to provide humanitarian relief for natural disasters impacting Canada and the Caribbean. Further details about the Foundation's activities can be found in the Air Canada Foundation Impact Report.

Highlights of the 2019 Impact Report include: 

  • More than $2.2 million net raised.
  • The annual Air Canada Foundation golf tournament alone raised a record-breaking $1.2 million net.
  • The Every Bit Counts program, the collection of loose change of any denomination on board and in Maple Leaf Lounges, raised over $406,000.
  • Aeroplan Members donated over 10 million Aeroplan miles toward the Hospital Transportation Program, which helped more than 220 children access the medical care they need away from home.

Air Canada's employees, through the Volunteer Involvement Program, also dedicate their time in various fundraising activities. This included Open Skies for Autism, initiated by an Air Canada flight-attendant that welcomed more than 100 children and adults with autism, and their families, from Jake's House and Autism Ontario, for a simulated airport and pre-flight experience.

"It's through our supporters that we are able to continue the work that we do. The Foundation has made a significant difference in the lives of thousands of children across the country with the unwavering support and generosity of Air Canada, its employees and partners. To each of you, we extend a heartfelt thank you on behalf of all the children and families whose lives are touched by the Foundation," said Priscille LeBlanc, Chair of the Air Canada Foundation.

For more information on the Air Canada Foundation and ways to donate, please visit aircanada.com/foundation.

About the Air Canada Foundation
The Air Canada Foundation, a not-for-profit organization focused on the health and well-being of children and youth, was launched in 2012. It offers both financial and in-kind support to Canadian registered charities. Core programs include the Hospital Transportation Program, which donates Aeroplan Miles to 15 pediatric hospitals across Canada, enabling sick children to access the medical care they need but which are unavailable locally. The Air Canada Foundation, in collaboration with the airline, also engages directly in fundraising activities, such as the Every Bit Counts program, which encourages Air Canada and Air Canada Rouge customers to donate loose change of all denominations aboard flights or through collection containers available in Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounges. The Foundation also offers continued support to major health-related causes that benefit Canadians and is an active participant in international humanitarian relief activity as the need arises. For more information about the Air Canada Foundation, please visit aircanada.com/foundation or the 2018 Corporate Sustainability Report, Citizens of the World, online at aircanada.com/citizensoftheworld.

About Air Canada
Air Canada is Canada's largest domestic and international airline. Canada's flag carrier is among the 20 largest airlines in the world and in 2019 served over 51 million customers. Air Canada is a founding member of Star Alliance, the world's most comprehensive air transportation network. Air Canada is the only international network carrier in North America to receive a Four-Star ranking according to independent U.K. research firm Skytrax, which also named Air Canada the 2019 Best Airline in North America. For more information, please visit: aircanada.com/media, follow Air Canada on Twitter and LinkedIn, and join Air Canada on Facebook.                   

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