For 16 years, UNICEF and Starwood Hotels and Resorts have been working together to raise funds for the world’s most vulnerable children - remarkably, almost US$8 million has been raised since the program began.
Starwood’s Robert Scott, former Senior Vice President, Europe, Africa, and Middle East Division, had a simple but great idea - to give Starwood guests the opportunity to make a small contribution to UNICEF’s work in helping children who need protection from poverty and disease. On arrival at participating Starwood Hotels, guests are given a Check Out for Children key card with their key wallet. At the end of their stay, a voluntary US$1 is added to their bill. This donation will go to UNICEF’s education programs.
The UNICEF Check Out for Children Challenge is a staff fund-raising competition between Starwood Hotels, which began in 2003, and continues to gather strong support throughout Starwood Hotels and Resorts in the Asia Pacific region. The Challenge has become an immensely popular way to increase hotel’s support of the Check out for Children program as it unites hotel staff and guests under a common goal – to help children in need.
In anticipation of the UNICEF Check Out for Children Challenge this year, Sheraton Nha Trang decided to take it up a notch with a flashmob on the beach on July 15. Relatively new in Vietnam, flashmobs are gaining momentum among the local youth as a fun group activity. To the tune of famous summer dance hits, more than 100 people danced on the beach in the exhilarating crowd.
“It was an exciting event; we had participation from our in-house guests, staff, and local residents. Everybody practiced the dance in advance, and it sure brought something new to our great destination,” exclaimed Catherine Racsko, the hotel’s General Manager.
A video clip from the event can be found here: http://youtu.be/nu0kuHTTJZQ .
Other activities of the hotel campaign include selling Check Out For Children t-shirts for 150,000 VND each and complimentary yoga classes on the beach.
Guests who wish to participate in this significant activity are encouraged to buy the t-shirt at the hotel or contact the hotel to make donations. The program will run until September 30.
“Through this program, we are taking an extra step in educating our staff and guests about the urgent needs of under privileged children around the world,” Racsko added.