(Broadry) — While hotels host travelers from near and far, many properties become an integral part of the communities they serve, partnering with philanthropic organizations on both the local and national level to make to make a difference.
We’ve highlighted some hotels doing their part to help uplift others, embodying the heart of true hospitality:
After nearly two decades of working closely together around the world, Fairmont Hotels & Resorts recently announced its first global partnership with Make-A-Wish® with the launch of Wishes Start Here. For more than 40 years, Make-A-Wish has been granting life-changing wishes for children diagnosed with critical illnesses and their families. Wishes Start Here is dedicated to transforming a child’s most cherished dream into reality, leaving them with incredible memories that will last a lifetime. Over the next three years, Fairmont is committed to making more than 500 children’s wishes come true, while donating charitable support to the lauded organization .
The Liberty Hotel in Boston has long hosted weekly Fashionably Late fashion shows, where models strut their stuff on the 90-foot high lobby’s catwalk (yes, an actual catwalk as the property was a 19th century jail!), pose on tables, ride the escalators, and weave through the crowd in designer duds, and local charities often benefit. For example, its upcoming fashion show with celebrity shoe designer Thom Solo on September 29 will benefit Women’s Lunch Placea unique daytime shelter for women providing healthy meals, daily necessities like toiletries and new undergarments, and one-on-one advocacy including providing assistance finding shelter beds, emergency housing, permanent housing, benefits, employment, fleeing domestic violence and other solutions to complex, long-term issues. Women’s Lunch Place is also a well-known safe space for members of Boston’s LGBTQIA+ community.
The Sandals Foundationthe philanthropic arm of Sandals Resorts International, was launched in 2009 to give back to the home islands of the resorts in the key areas of education, community and environment. To date, they’ve given $77 million to Caribbean projects with the help of 26,000 volunteers. Even better, 100% of proceeds go directly back into the communities. This fall, Sandals will officially welcome its first class of students to the Gordon ‘Butch’ Stewart International School of Hospitality and Tourism. This new school will prepare the next generation to excel in various tourism and tourism-related sectors, including entertainment, construction, engineering, food and beverage and supply chain logistics. Set to debut online for the Fall 2022 semester, plans are underway for a brick and mortar school will be located at the Western Jamaica Campus of The University of the West Indies in Montego Bay, Jamaica, with a completion goal set for 2023.
In 2016, Omni Hotels & Resort launched Say Goodnight to Hungeran initiative in which for each booked and completed stay at an Omni branded hotel or resort in the US, Omni donates the monetary equivalent of one meal ($0.10) to hunger relief leader, Feeding America®. Since the campaign’s inception, more than 20 million meals have been donated to help Feeding America provide nutritious meals for food banks to feed children, families and seniors in communities across the country. Since 2017, Omni has partnered with the PGA Tour on its “Birdie-or-Better” campaign, augmenting funds for Say Goodnight to Hunger. For each birdie-or-better scored during each tournament, the equivalent of four meals will be donated to Feeding America. Year to date, Omni has donated over 875,000 meals through the birdie-or- better program.
Hyatt hotels just celebrated the fourth anniversary of RiseHYa global program designed to pair the hospitality industry’s career opportunities with young people who need them. As part of the initiative, Hyatt hotels around the world committed to hiring 10,000 Opportunity Youth – people ages 16 to 24 who are neither in school nor working – by 2025. The corporation partners with community-based organizations around the world providing vocational training and career readiness programs to bring RiseHY to life and help vulnerable young people gain the education and skills they need to grow and thrive. With the help of virtual reality, young people can experience what life is like working inside a hotel while digital technology designed to match candidates’ skillsets with the entry-level job that is the best fit will help set them up for success from the start. With the help of organizations like Youth Career Initiative and Grads of Life, Hyatt hotels can provide on-the-job training programs as well as full-time employment.
Cooking aficionados, listen up! Le Barthelemy Hotel & Spaa boutique luxury property in St. Barths just launched a zero-waste cooking class in conjunction with the head chef the hotel’s new restaurant Amis St. Barth, which serves up island-inspired French Mediterranean cuisine. Chef Vincent Gomis and his culinary team will guide guests through an educational cooking experience to limit food waste while supporting small local fisherman businesses. Guests will accompany the chef to the beach in front of the hotel to greet local fisherman as they anchor up and present the line-caught local catch of the day. There, guests will hand select their fish and join the chef in the energy efficient kitchen to learn how to apply zero waste cooking techniques to their meal, using every bit of food from pit to peel and composts to create juices, dressings and sauces and even the fish roe to make the restaurant’ signature tarama. The chef hopes this experience will both inspire and influence more people to be mindful about consuming local, seasonal and zero-waste meals while supporting the local producers in the regions in which they live. This new experience comes on the heels of the hotel’s partnership with St . Barths Environmental Territorial Agency (ATE); which partners with scientists and environmentalists to protect and preserve the wild nature that inhabits the island, particularly in the Natures Reserve in which Le Barthelemy overlooks.
Wynn Resorts works with The Pack Shack, a non-profit organization that partners with companies, schools and universities, faith-based organizations and other groups to address food security through their signature “Feed the Funnel” parties across their US properties. This past June , staff, friends, family members, community partners, vendors and guests at Encore Boston Harbor packed 83,000 meals that were distributed within the local community. The hotel now hosts Feed the Funnel events twice a year and has set the goal of packing more than three times the amount of meals they have in the past.
Written by Broadry Contributor Andrea McHugh