TORONTO — G Adventures has found a new way to spread goodwill around the world with the launch of three new funds that directly help locals in need.
According to founder Bruce Poon Tip, the funds were created in response to an overwhelming number of requests from travellers wanting to help people impacted by the effects of the current pandemic. These include G Adventures’ CEOs (chief experience officers or tour guides), Inca Trail porters, cooks and horsemen, and local community projects that typically rely on tourism to survive and flourish.
“I’ve had hundreds, if not thousands, of letters asking me how to help,” he says. “This is what makes our community of travellers different – we transcend travel when our collective humanity extends support during difficult times.
“These funds all have been launched to answer requests to help people in need. It is one of the most heartwarming movements I’ve witnessed in my 30 years of building G Adventures as a leader in social enterprise and community tourism.”
The new funds are as follows:
CEO WELLBEING FUND
This new fund allows travellers to contribute to people who’ve played a meaningful role in their past vacations, and promotes the overall health, wellbeing and happiness of CEOs who may need financial support following an accident, natural disaster or through illness of difficult circumstances. While G Adventures has always helped its CEOs on an ad-hoc basis, the current landscape has prompted the need to create a more permanent, long-term fund, which will be managed by G’s non-profit partner, Planeterra.
PORTERS SUPPORT FUND
This fund has been created specifically for Inca Trail porters, cooks and horsemen who have been unable to work due to the effects of COVID-19. Many of these men and women live in remote villages that are particularly vulnerable due to the lack of tourism. This fund gives travellers who’ve hiked the Inca Trail, Lares Trek, Salkantay Trail or Choquequirao Trek the chance to give back to the team that makes these trips possible.
PLANETERRA IMPACT FUND
This fund has been created to help people at existing Planeterra projects (85 projects in more than 50 countries) that rely on travellers to earn an income. Planeterra is encouraging travellers to “turn travel into impact from home” by donating to help these social enterprises to weather the storm and enable them to continue providing memorable experiences to travellers in the future.
Poon Tip will be matching the first $50,000 of donations to both the CEO wellbeing and the Planeterra Impact Funds. 100% of all donations will go directly to the people impacted, allowing these valued members of G Adventures’ community the flexibility to determine how best to use the funds to address their individual needs.