Before our week of giving back concludes, I want to take a moment to reflect on all the momentum raised on #GivingTuesday and to thank our colleagues, community partners and friends who helped bring awareness to the importance of supporting our local nonprofits.
We were thrilled to see so many organizations and individuals take a stand on #GivingTuesday and share the powerful message on their social channels. All in all, we counted more than 350 posts on #GivingTuesday about our community grant winners and we are thrilled that so many people took action to share these great stories with their networks. Based on our analytics, it’s estimated that our potential reach on #GivingTuesday was over 260,000 with over 2.0 potential impressions too! Also, if you haven’t caught it already, check out what our Global Head of Corporate Responsibility Brigitta Witt has to say about why companies should care about #GivingTuesday here.
As we round out the week, I want to bring attention to our final grant winners and highlight their great work in our local communities around the world.
- Grand Hyatt Istanbul in Turkey will award a Hyatt Community Grant to Koruncuk Foundation, which is a nonprofit orphanage that provides shelter, care, and education to 120 children in its various facilities or “villages.” The Hyatt Community Grant will sponsor the creation of a “Grant Hyatt Art Academy”. The foundation believes that children’s development relies not only on receiving basic needs such as food and shelter, but should also include activities that stimulate their self-esteem and provide them with a creative outlet. The academy would allow the children to express their creativity through various artistic platforms such as theater, handcrafts, sculpting, and painting.
- Grand Hyatt Shanghai will award a grant to the Shanghai Charity Foundation’s Education Fund. The Education Fund provides financial support to low-income and high-performing students in Shanghai’s Pudong District. The grant will specifically support high school and college students with $500 per year for three years to cover expenses for school tuition and basic needs.
- Hyatt Place Hampi in India will award a grant to The Akshaya Patra Foundation, which fights hunger and malnutrition. The organization provides school lunches to 1.4 million children in 23 locations across 10 states in India. While the hotel is still new to the community, the team has volunteered in the foundation’s kitchen to help prepare the meals for students. The grant would provide lunches to 1,500 children for one year. For many of these children these lunches will be their only meal of the day. Because of the foundation’s meals, school enrollment, attendance, and performance have increased significantly in all the locations that it serves. Overall attendance increased by 12 percent and dropout rates decreased from 18 percent to 8 percent. Akshaya Patra’s unique model has been recognized internationally and received several accolades. In July 2014, President Bill Clinton visited the foundation during an official visit and, in 2007, the foundation’s school meal program was featured in a Harvard Business Review case study.
- At Hyatt Regency Dallas in Texas, their local Women@hyatt chapter, one of Hyatt’s business resource groups for colleagues, nominated Girls Incorporated of Metropolitan Dallas for a grant award. Hyatt colleagues volunteer each month assisting with homework help, workshops and mock career fairs. The mission of Girls Inc. is to inspire girls from age 6 to 18 to become strong, smart, bold, and independent adults. The grant will support the organization’s research-based after-school and summer programs to help girls navigate gender, economic, and social barriers.
- Hyatt Regency Dusseldorf in Germany will award a grant to Children’s Hospice Dusseldorf (Kinderhospiz Regenbogenland). The hospice provides respite and end-of-life care for children with incurable and life-limiting illnesses and their families. The hotel team has worked with this organization since 2011 by hosting various fundraisers. The grant will help refurbish the hospice’s seven bedrooms, which are now ten years old and in disrepair. More specifically, the grant will be used to buy new cabinets, wardrobes, and other pieces for furniture. The hospice can serve up to eight families at a time, hosting a total of 260 families over the course of a year.
- Hyatt Regency Gurgaon in India will provide a grant to Gaurav Niketan Trust, a small school that provides free education to underpriveldged children the age of 2 and 13. The students come from families of migrant workers who work on construction sites around Gurgaon, earning less than $35 per month. The school originated as an open-air “school in the street” and still has only the most basic infrastructure for the students, who would otherwise not attend school at all. At the school, the students learn English, math, social studies, and science. The grant will provide basic amenities, improve the current facilities, and provide scholarships for the oldest students so that they can continue to pursue their education. The school currently serves 200 students and the hotel team has been actively engaged since learn about the school. They have hosted several events for the students, volunteers have taught classes to students, and the hotel team even helped install a cement floor for the school prior to the monsoon season.
- The team at Hyatt Regency Jersey City in New Jersey will award a grant to KidsGardening.org to build a garden at a local charter school. The team has already raised $7,400 on their own and the additional funds will help them reach their fundraising goal. KidsGardening.org is a program run by the National Gardening Association (NGA). Every year the organization provides 300 funding opportunities to schools, nonprofits, and communities to build and grow their own gardens. Since its creation, the program helped 10,000 schools and community-based organizations. The garden will be installed in Dr. Lena Edwards Academic Charter School, which is ten minutes away from the Hyatt property and serves students in a neighborhood where the poverty rate is double the average of the state and the median income is significantly lower than the state average of $30,000 per year.
- The team at Park Hyatt Zanzibar in Tanzania will open its doors to the community before opening to guests in 2015! They are awarding a grant to The Creative Education Foundation of Zanzibar (CEFZ), a school that provides quality education to orphans and low-income, at-risk children. While Zanzibar has a flourishing tourism industry, few Zanzibaris have the skills to work in the industry. The school hopes to bridge that gap and offer Zanzibari children a chance to secure highly skilled, well-paid jobs in the future. One of the school’s main goals is to teach English to its children; thus the grant will allow CEFZ to hire an English teacher who would oversee the curriculum and serve as a trainer and mentor to other teachers.
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