Travel with Purpose: Celebrating Our ME to WE Global Partnership By Offering Life-Changing Volunteer Trip Experiences
Thanks to an introduction from Marie Anne MacRae, our Global VP of Strategic Partnerships, beginning in 2014, The Travel Corporation supported WE Day UK as a transportation sponsor by taking deserving London-based high school students to Wembley arena. Last October, I personally attended my first WE Day experience in Toronto. It was amazing to witness 20,000 engaged young people who earned their invitation to this event by joining the WE movement and doing volunteer work in their local communities.
The impact of 2.4 million young individuals in various countries taking action and learning leadership skills, has resulted in 14.6 million hours of volunteer service logged worldwide, 45 million dollars raised for 1000+ charities and 5.6 million pounds of food collected for food banks. This past April, our millennial brand, Contiki Holidays and my family together were a Platinum sponsor at WE Day California, where my wife Miranda, our daughter Ella and sons Jake and Max, also joined to celebrate WE’s young change-makers. Miranda also organized several fundraisers at our home and invited WE Ambassador, Spencer West to speak about his WE experiences. In addition, Contiki, Trafalgar and TTC Canada have made donations to help build WE schools across the globe over the past couple of years.
A few days after WE Day Toronto 2015, I met with the co-founder of WE Charity and ME to WE (MTW), Marc Kielburger to collaborate how we could further enhance our ‘360’ partnership which would help promote their volunteer trips and further support their WE Villages development program. Fast forward one year – on September 27th this year, on World Tourism Day, The Travel Corporation and our TreadRight Foundation officially announced our MTW global partnership. Seven of our TTC brands including Trafalgar, Contiki Holidays, Insight Vacations, Uniworld, Lion World Travel, African Travel Inc. and Adventure World will be offering immersive volunteer trips in Kenya, the Ecuadorian Amazon and India. Many of our guests are open to experiencing meaningful travel with unforgettable, moving experiences. We are therefore very excited to be supporting MTW’s outstanding volunteer trips.
In conjunction with our TTC brands’ trips, our travelers can join these ME to WE volunteer trip extensions on a requested custom trip or on various upcoming set departures. They will stay at MTW’s very comfortable lodges which they own and operate. Guests will be hosted by an expert facilitator, who will assist them with an opportunity to volunteer on a sustainable development project, such as building a school for future generations and experiencing the daily lives of the community members.
I have met the founders of these quite remarkable organizations on several occasions, Craig and Marc Kiehburger. I have the utmost respect and admiratioon for them, and all they have achieved together over the past 20 years. I am committed to helping them personally and professionally however and whenever I can. I implore you to read a bit about them and what they do, and if this “presses your buttons” too then please get involved helping support them in any way you can.
On behalf of TTC and our 10,000 strong team members, it is our collective commitment that this is an altruistic partnership which was created to introduce, support and promote ME to WE’s volunteer trips through our network of industry relationships, contacts and the travelers going to these three destinations with our brands. We want to help them grow their business which in turn helps further support the communities they work with, since half of their profits will go back to their WE Charity and stay in the local communities. Every trip also contributes to the international development efforts in the communities which these travelers will visit, and the other half is reinvested to grow ME to WE’s social enterprise.
If you are interested to learn more about these ME to WE volunteer trip extensions please view our 7 brands’ website links:
All the best and thank you for your support,