2 December 1999: Members of the oneworld? global airline alliance today unveiled a major initiative designed to raise tens of millions of dollars for some of the most deprived children all around the world.
The airlines have adopted UNICEF as oneworld’s global charity programme, and expect to raise some $25 million for the cause in the next five years.
They have committed to support the UN children’s charity organisation through its Change for Good programme and other fund-raising efforts, and will increase awareness of UNICEF through their in-flight magazines and videos.
Future members of oneworld will be required to participate in the Change for Good programme as one of the conditions for oneworld membership.
Don Carty, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of American Airlines, and current chair of oneworld’s Governing Board, said: “At oneworld, we are all committed to providing our customers the best travel experience possible all around the world, but we are just as committed to making the world a better place, especially for children. We salute UNICEF for its many years of outstanding service on behalf of children, who are the key to our future, and today we ask our customers to join us in supporting those efforts.”
“Every coin and currency makes a difference for children,” said Charles.J.Lyons, President of the U.S. Committee for UNICEF. “The alliance with oneworld will help UNICEF improve children’s lives and ensure tangible results for kinds - like the near eradication of polio, improved access to health care, basic education and proper nutrition. UNICEF applauds the commitment of oneworld members, and the progress they make possible for children around the world.”
Flight attendants have been collecting UNICEF Change for Good on board international flights since 1987. Qantas became the first oneworld airline to participate in 1991.
Passengers are encouraged to empty their pockets of surplus coins and foreign currency collected on their travels. This is converted into life-saving materials and services for the world’s neediest children.
Since 1991, oneworld member airlines have collected more than
$21 million, which represents more than 90 per cent of funds raised through the programme. British Airways alone has collected nearly $14 million. Cathay Pacific collects more Change for Good than any other airline in Asia.
oneworld members will also collect funds for UNICEF through other fund-raising efforts of their choice.
oneworld is an alliance among seven of the world’s leading airlines - American Airlines, British Airways, Canadian Airlines, Cathay Pacific, Finnair, Iberia and Qantas. Aer Lingus and LanChile have been invited to join the alliance and are expected to start offering oneworld benefits and services during 2000.
Members work together to provide customers smoother transfers at key airports, access to more than 300 airport lounges around the world, enhanced opportunities to earn and redeem frequent flyer miles and global customer assistance.