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Profiles in Diversity Journal | Jul/Aug 2009

Profiles in Diversity Journal | Jul/Aug 2009

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July August 2009

Corporate Philanthropy

Corporate philanthropy is alive and well. The examples in this feature prove it. Compassion is its own action item in the boardrooms of the largest companies.
July August 2009

Corporate Philanthropy

Corporate philanthropy is alive and well. The examples in this feature prove it. Compassion is its own action item in the boardrooms of the largest companies.

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Published by: Profiles in Diversity Journal on Mar 18, 2011
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American Airlines flight
attendants (from left)

Frank eschmann, lourdes
Gonzalez-daly, rolando
Vazquez
and mary
Furlong-Ferguson
look
on as Honduran children
receive toothbrushes and
fluoride thanks to the
Change for Good program.

visiting Honduras to see Change for Good
donations in action, American Airlines flight
attendant Frank eschmann receives special
thanks from a young beneficiary.

American Airlines
flight attendant

mary Furlong-
Ferguson
visits with
local youngsters
in tegucigalpa,
Honduras.

PROFILES IN DIVERSITY JOURNAL JULY/AUGUST 2009 41

CORPORATE PHILANTHROPY

AMERICAN AIRLINES

Headquarters:

Fort Worth, Texas

Web site:

www.aa.com

Primary Business:

Travel and transportation.

Employees:

More than 76,000 worldwide

AS A GLOBAL AIRLINE, American Airlines has a special awareness

of the need to help the developing world’s most underprivileged and

vulnerable children. One important way this is happening is through

Change for Good®

, an innovative partnership established in 1987 be-

tween UNICEF and the aviation industry to help these very children

and improve their circumstances.

American Airlines is the sole U.S.-based carrier among nearly a

dozen international airlines that supports the Change for Good pro-

gram, which has generated more than $90 million in donations to

date. Since 1999, the program has also been the official charity of the

oneworld®

Alliance, of which American is a founding member.

Change for Good invites travelers on selected domestic and inter-

national American Airlines flights to contribute their unused domestic

and foreign coins and currency, which are gathered by the flight at-

tendants, or to make donations in the airline’s Admirals Clubs and

Flagship Lounges worldwide. Flight attendants volunteer to make

onboard announcements and collect donations, and an in-flight video

informs passengers about the Change for Good program and the proj-

ects their funds support.

American’s involvement in Change for

Good is supported by Airline Ambassadors International, a humani-

tarian organization founded by American Airlines flight attendants,

who volunteer use of their flight privileges to help children in need

all over the world. Airline Ambassadors leads recruitment and training

of “Champions for Children”—as participating flight attendants and

other employee volunteers are called—who in turn encourage custom-

ers to get involved.

“Of the funds collected via Change for Good, 50 percent supports

HIV/AIDS programs in Latin America,” said Sam Santiago, Director,

Workforce Giving & Volunteerism. “The remaining 50 percent is

split between general UNICEF programs and special programs in the

Champions’ country of choice.

“It really is wonderful for all of us to know, and more impor-

tantly, to see for ourselves, that we are helping to bring about positive

changes in so many young lives,” he added, noting that a small group

of American Airlines employees traveled to Honduras this spring to see

the donations in action.

American Airlines now has more than 1,500 Champions

for Children volunteers company-wide, who have collected more

than $1.6 million since a program re-launch in 2006, making

Change for Good the company’s largest employee giving and

volunteerism program. PDJ

DENISE LYNN

Vice President, Diversity and Leadership Strategies

American Airlines, U.S. Fund for UNICEF
Work Together to Make “Change for Good”

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