Prevue May/June 2015 - (Page 12)

planner's pick PLANNERS: Genband, Dragonfly & Carlson Wagonlit Travel South Africa Incentive Integrates CSR Attendees lace up for adventure and community giveback Henna School students pose with their new shoes W hen Genband chose South Africa for its Presidents Circle trip, a CSR activity was on the agenda from the start. What kind and how to deliver it were what won the company a 2014 Crystal Award from Site, along with its planning partners Dragonfly Africa and Carlson Wagonlit Travel Meetings & Events. Winners spent three nights at the One & Only Cape Town, followed by a three-night safari near Kruger National Park in the Sabi Sand Private Game Reserve. Woven into the agenda was a "Give Back to Africa" campaign. The company included locally sourced gifts as part of the gala dinner. They also chose local performers for the entertainment-the Hout Bay Music Project, which promotes music among township kids. But the highlight was a trip to the Henna Pre-Primary School, which is within driving distance of Kruger National Park in an area so rural and poverty-stricken that it has no street signs. The Henna School cares for 180 children between the ages of two and four so their teenage mothers have a chance to go back to school. Before the event, qualifiers were asked to pledge donations via a dedicated Facebook page and to bring new or lightly used items from a predetermined list. Genband also donated a new pair of running shoes-some 220 pairs in total-to each child at the school. Most of the children did not even own shoes so it was a challenge to get their correct shoe sizes. Dragonfly located a company to source the sneakers from its branches across Southern Africa. It also negotiated with Fedair, the air charter company that flies to the Sabi Sand region, to ship the sneakers free of charge over a period of time, whenever there was extra space on board. Dragonfly also worked with the school to create short biographies about each child; the shoeboxes were labeled with each child's details and placed in attendees' guest rooms beforehand. Genband also purchased additional shoes in each size to have on hand in the event that the shoes did not fit and for any additional unexpected children. "When the pairs of shoes were given to the children, there were so many smiles and 'thumbs ups,'" says Tony Wagner, VP, CWT Meetings & Events Americas. "There was true happiness felt on both sides." Wagner estimates that about 20 percent of the incentive programs CWT manages include a CSR component. "It not only enables an organization and its attendees to give back to a local community and support a local cause, but it creates an unforgettable experience for their attendees." In fact, Genband's participants were so touched that they asked to make further donations, which Genband then matched, for a total contribution of more than $7,000. The funds have since been used to buy a lawnmower, fans, kids' plastic chairs, seedlings for a garden, stainless steel cutlery and tiles for the school's verandah. As a chance for attendees to stay connected, the Facebook page was continued after the event, with new photos posted of the children and the items that were purchased. Dragonfly has also worked with the school to set up a swap shop for the shoes so that as kids grow out of them, they can bring them back and exchange them for a bigger size.-Barbara Scofidio;; "When the pairs of shoes were given to the children, there were so many smiles and 'thumbs-ups'-there was true happiness felt on both sides." 12 | prevue magazine 12-13_PlannersPick.indd 12 4/22/15 1:17 PM

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Prevue May/June 2015

Planner’s Pick: South Africa
Fresh Meets: Sheraton Expands in China
Bureau Buzz: Meet Hawaii
Good Business: Accor on Gender Equality
Sea Shores: Windstar Cruises
Experience Luxury
On Location: Destination Resorts
On Location: Northeast Florida
On Location: Iberostar Playa Mita
On Location: Manchester Grand Hyatt San Diego
Checkout: Hyatt Ziva Rose Hall & Zilara Rose Hall

Prevue May/June 2015