Thursday, 7 June 2018

Etihad marks Zayed Humanitarian Day

The Etihad Aviation Group has launched an array of community and humanitarian initiatives to mark Zayed Humanitarian Day, which falls on 19 Ramadhan (4 June).

The programme, which includes food donations, community activities and charity campaigns, demonstrates Etihad’s commitment to local and global humanitarian activities, reflecting a spirit of sharing during Ramadhan and the Year of Zayed.

As part of its corporate social responsibility, the UAE national airline has carried out a number of projects and initiatives including treating 10 elderly people from the Old People’s Home in Sharjah to a flight simulator experience, iftar and Eid gifts in a family setting together with some of the airline’s pilots.

In line with its ongoing commitment to support underprivileged children, Etihad has teamed up with the Emirates Red Crescent to distribute Eid gifts to 600 orphans in Kerala, India. It has also donated school bags, stationery items and clothes to an orphanage of 240 children in Vietnam.

In Sri Lanka, 136 children from orphanages and children’s homes enjoyed a Movie Night on board an Etihad Airways’ aircraft, and enjoyed activities and meals.

Khaled AlMehairbi, Senior VP and GM, Etihad Airport Services Ground – Abu Dhabi Hub and CSR Strategy, said, “We are excited to announce this large-scale programme, boosting our charitable and community footprint locally and globally. The Zayed Humanitarian Day is very special this year as we celebrate the Year of Zayed in 2018. We are inspired by the late founding father Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan to give back and bring smiles to those who are less fortunate.

“With a strong global presence and extensive network, Etihad Airways is ideally positioned to reach out to vulnerable communities in different parts of the world and to make a lasting and positive impact through initiatives that span education, food donations, orphan support and relief aid.”

The company also announced an initiative for guest miles donations which will be channelled to sponsor iftar meals for Rohingya children and families, and the promotion of child education across the world.

Etihad Aviation Group has partnered with Emirates Red Crescent over several community projects to mark the Zayed Humanitarian Day: 

- Donating dry food parcels to more than 1,300 families in India
- Donating dry food parcels to 1,000 families in Sri Lanka
- Supporting 1,000 Syrian refugees at Ritsona camp in Greece with brand new clothing and Eid gifts
- Distributing dates to 73 outstations for charity
- Distributing iftar boxes to the workforce during the month of Ramadhan, with an expected 8,000 meals to be donated to housekeeping, security and maintenance workers based at Etihad offices.
- Distributing wheelchairs to the Specialist Center for Children with Disabilities in Sharjah, which provides regular care and treatment for children up to 18 years old.

In late May, Etihad Cargo, the cargo division of Etihad Airways, the national airline of the UAE, has launched its first humanitarian freighter missions as part of the group’s Year of Zayed programme.

The specially branded Year of Zayed Boeing 777 freighter aircraft departed Abu Dhabi – first to Almaty in Kazakhstan and then to Hyderabad in India – carrying provisions to be distributed to those in need during Ramadhan.

The humanitarian missions are taking place throughout the year in collaboration with the Khalifa Foundation, the Red Crescent, and His Highness Sheikh Sultan Bin Khalifa Al Nahyan Humanitarian & Scientific Foundation. These missions represent the Year of Zayed theme of respect, one of the four key themes of Etihad’s Year of Zayed activation plan.

Peter Baumgartner, Etihad Airways’ CEO said: “We are pleased to have commenced our first Year of Zayed humanitarian operations with our cargo aircraft which is crossing the globe to deliver vital items to help people most in need.

“The humanitarian missions embody the spirit and values of the UAE’s founding father, HH Sheikh Zayed, and we are proud to play a small role in carrying forward his legacy and supporting people in need from around the globe.”

Faris Saif Al Mazrouei, GM, The Founder's Office, said: “The Founder’s Office is proud to support Etihad Airways’ humanitarian efforts, which will bring relief to thousands during the holy month of Ramadhan.

“The late Sheikh Zayed initiated countless philanthropic and charitable endeavours throughout his lifetime. His spirit of altruism and generosity transcended borders, and laid the foundations for the UAE’s ongoing role as a leading provider of international aid.

“This worthy initiative upholds his legacy, reflecting one of the central themes of our Year of Zayed campaign which is to reinforce the spirit of solidarity amongst community members through selfless giving, and globally extending a helping hand to all those in need.”
Last month, Etihad also launched a community drive to donate 150,000 inflight meals to charity in 2018, and for every year in the future.