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Our charity partnerships have always been close to our hearts, through the Virgin Atlantic Foundation – our own charity which was setup in 2003 - we have distributed millions of pounds generated through our Change for Children on-board appeal, and our own staff fundraising. These funds are primarily to support our long-standing partnership with WE. This much-loved and supported partnership has inspired Virgin people, their partners and our customers to raise millions of pounds for projects in the UK and our worldwide destinations.
In 2010, we chose to partner with one main charity partner in order to create the biggest impact and be able to support some of the communities in the countries we fly to. That charity was WE: a movement that brings people together and gives them the tools to change the world. WE have remained our main charity partner ever since.
We were the first airline to introduce an onboard charity appeal, collecting spare change and foreign currency for charity. We called it Change for Children. Every month, we raise thousands of pounds for the Virgin Atlantic Foundation. This is primarily donated to support our work with WE, however in times of humanitarian crisis, we may divert funds to Save The Children for their Children's Emergency Fund.
We’ve been proud partners of WE since 2010. And this partnership has been more successful than we could ever have hoped for. In fact, it has inspired Virgin Atlantic employees, partners and customers to raise over £5 million for projects at home and overseas.
Through our partnership, we support the WE Schools programme, bringing active citizenship and leadership skills to young people across the UK; WE Day UK and WE Day New York, an amazing event celebrating the young people who take part in WE Schools; and WE Villages, where we fund clean energy projects in poor, rural communities in India, Kenya and China. Please click here.
Change is in the air
This is the name we give to our sustainability programme, because we believe that sustainability means changing things for the better.
Watch our video for more insight.
Virgin Holidays - Cetaceans
Virgin Holidays is investing US$300,000 with the non-profit, US National Aquarium in Baltimore to support the creation of North America’s first dolphin sanctuary and the move of its seven captive dolphins (Jade, Spirit, Maya, Bayley, Chesapeake, Foster and Beau) from their indoor dolphinarium to a more natural outdoors environment. The exact location of the sanctuary is yet to be determined but site selection is focused on Florida. The sanctuary will provide the dolphins with a much bigger living space and be located near the coast. It will give the animals the chance to experience a far more natural habitat with exposure to ocean tides, temperature variations, and other ocean life such as fish, crabs and seaweed. We have spent the previous year assessing the various sanctuary projects in development around the world, and after consultation with experts decided on the National Aquarium’s ground-breaking initiative.
One of the major dilemmas for the tourism industry is the argument over whether those whales and dolphins currently in captivity can thrive in more natural settings – and Virgin Holidays and the National Aquarium hope this new project will show that more natural alternatives are viable. Virgin Holidays is the number one British tour operator to Florida, and is hopeful that this sanctuary and the others in development will lead to a significant industry shift in the way tourists interact with these complex animals. Please click here.
As a travel company, we believe we have a responsibility to the world. Holidays matter, but so do their impact - not only on you, but also on this beautiful planet and the sometimes fragile habitats that make your favourite destinations so incredible. Whether it’s making the world more accessible to our diverse range of customers, ensuring the people who work in the hotels we feature get a fair deal or by supporting young people to reach their potential in our holiday destinations, we work hard to make good things happen around the globe.
We believe that everyone can take on the world, and we want to bring this to life every day with our values and initiatives. An example of this is our community investment in The Branson Centre for Entrepreneurship Caribbean, which we support in partnership with Virgin Unite (the non-profit foundation of the Virgin Group)
More details in this video
Virgin Atlantic and Virgin Holidays