Delta Air Lines’ Force for Global Good launches its first “voluntourism” project in South America with Habitat for Humanity
Atlanta, Nov. 7, 2008 — Next week, meetings, conference calls and presentations will have to wait for a group of Delta Air Lines and Northwest employees as they trade their laptops and cell phones for hammers and saws and board a plane bound for Chile to work on a Habitat for Humanity build.
From November 7–14, 2008, more than 60 Delta and Northwest employees and two Delta customers will construct 12 homes in Casablanca, located 43 miles west of Santiago, Chile’s capital. The “voluntourism” trip is made possible by Delta’s Force for Global Good, an initiative through which Delta employees, customers and community partners work together to effect positive local and global change.
Employees use vacation days to participate and are responsible for covering the costs of room and board, thereby maximizing the resources Delta commits to the project. For some, the trip to Chile will be their second or third Delta/Habitat for Humanity build.
“Our partnership with Habitat for Humanity makes a difference in and around destinations we serve, creating a positive and direct impact on the development of communities that have welcomed us into their country,” said Edward H. Bastian, president and chief financial officer for Delta Air Lines. “It is amazing to see our teams from all over the United States and from Chile come together to build homes while improving people’s lives and enriching our own through the spirit of giving.”
Similar projects have taken place in South Africa, Ghana and India. Within the United States, Force for Global Good volunteers have also built houses in New York, Mississippi and Georgia.
Since 2002, Habitat for Humanity Chile has trained and organized more than 100 national and international teams to build homes in partnership with 3,500 families in five regions of the country through its “Building Houses Without Limits” program. Habitat for Humanity Chile also works with mothers who are heads of household to provide workshops that cover topics such as home economics and small business administration.
“The generous participation of national and international volunteers is the key for what we do, which goes beyond building homes,” said Yolanda Rojas, program director of Habitat for Humanity Chile. “We appreciate Delta’s enthusiastic contributions in helping us improve the living conditions of families in Casablanca.”
Delta volunteers will be joined by Thomas Harley of Pompano Beach, Florida, a Delta SkyMiles® member who bid 261,000 miles in an online auction to win the voluntourism package. The miles will be donated to Habitat for Humanity and will add to the more than eight million frequent flyer miles that have been donated through Delta and Northwest in recent years. Harley invited friend Bryan Tanori to accompany him on the trip. Harley’s package includes
• two round-trip tickets to Santiago, Chile.
• seven-night accommodations.
• all meals.
• transportation within Chile.
• the chance to make a difference working side-by-side with dedicated volunteers.
Delta and Habitat launched their partnership in 2006, when the airline unveiled the first 767-300 featuring a unique Habitat for Humanity livery and a Delta Force for Global Good decal. Habitat has been an AirCares® partner with Northwest since 1996.
About Delta Air Lines
With its acquisition of Northwest Airlines, Delta Air Lines is now the world’s largest airline. From its hubs in Atlanta, Cincinnati, Detroit, Memphis, Minneapolis-St. Paul, New York-JFK, Salt Lake City and Tokyo-Narita, Delta and its Northwest subsidiary offer service to more than 375 destinations worldwide in 66 countries and serve more than 170 million passengers each year. Delta’s marketing alliances allow customers to earn and redeem either SkyMiles or WorldPerks on more than 16,000 daily flights offered by SkyTeam and other partners. Delta and its 75,000 worldwide employees are reshaping the aviation industry as the only U.S. airline to offer a full global network. More information about the new Delta is available online at news.delta.com .
About Habitat for Humanity
Habitat for Humanity International is an ecumenical Christian ministry that welcomes to its work all people dedicated to the cause of eliminating poverty housing. Since its founding in 1976, Habitat has built nearly 300,000 houses worldwide, providing simple, decent and affordable shelter for more than 1.5 million people. For more information, visit www.habitat.org .