The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company, L.L.C. is pleased to announce the launch of Impact Experiences, a Community Footprints program offering group guests the opportunity to participate in socially responsible activities that make a positive impact on the destination while fostering collaboration and a great sense of accomplishment.
The announcement was made at the Travel + Social Good Summit held at the United Nations, a conference focused on ushering in the travel industry of the future; an industry in which all travel will have a positive economic, environmental, cultural and social impact for travelers, destinations and residents; Impact Experiences offer signature social and environmental impact activities that make a meaningful contribution and enable participants to feel personally connected to the local community.
“We are proud to make Impact Experiences available at every one of our hotels around the world to provide our guests with an option to address local social and environmental issues,” said Herve Humler, President and Chief Operations Officer of The Ritz-Carlton. “Impact Experiences have the power through coordinated efforts and volume to be a significant force for good.”
Examples of signature Impact Experiences organized by Ritz-Carlton hotels in local communities include a heritage farming project on an organic farm in Arizona; supporting critical coastal trail and rain forest restoration in Kapalua, Hawaii; protecting the natural wetland environment in Donau-Auen National Park near Vienna, Austria; planting the endangered native species of trees in Dubai; collaborating with The Battery Conservancy in New York to help beautify the 25-acre public park; and building bird nests for migrating rare bird species at the remarkable wetland that is the Futian Mangrove Natural Reserve Area in Shenzhen, China.
Impact Experiences also offer on-property activities that may be incorporated to a conference agenda during lunch breaks, receptions and coffee breaks. These include:
- Partnering with the hotel’s culinary team to prepare the ingredients for a regionally adapted dish for donation to a local hunger relief organization.
- Assembling school supplies and art materials in backpacks for donation to students whose academic success is threatened by poverty.
- Collaborating in teams to assemble emergency preparedness kits to be shipped to a disaster relief facility or community organization.
The Ritz-Carlton, Guangzhou is pleased to offer group guests an opportunity to learn about the wetland ecosystem and contribute to rehabilitation efforts through a 2.5-km or 5-km introductive hiking trip in Haizhu Wetland Park – the largest downtown wetland park in Southern China. The best spots for bird-watching await along the way, and guests are given the opportunity to gain a deeper understanding and appreciation of the importance of living in harmony with nature from a trio of experiences and species maintenance and conservation tasks in the park. In order to help ensure a sustainable future for the wetland, guests are invited to participate in a trio of experiences which also include tree planting, mulching, watering, invasive plant removal and more. All in all, this meaningful team-building activity increases awareness on environmental conservation and highlights the importance of protecting various kinds of rare species. It has a positive impact on both participants and the environment.
Groups also have the opportunity to participate in an Impact Hour event, a program that was designed through a participant hackathon at the 2014 Travel + Social Good Summit. The compelling and educational experience provides a platform for leaders from The Ritz-Carlton Community Footprints partners organizations to showcase how they are successfully addressing social and environmental issues.