Air Transat takes the opportunity to donate $309,605 to the Foundation
MONTREAL, Dec. 10, 2013 /CNW Telbec/ - On a very special flight bound
for the North Pole, at a cruising altitude of 8,000 metres, about a
hundred sick children joined forces with Air Transat and the Children's
Wish Foundation today to bring Santa Claus back to Montreal. Air
Transat took the opportunity to turn over $309,605 to the Foundation,
representing amounts collected over the past year as part of the
carrier's Small Change, Big Hearts program and other activities.
The adventure began in the morning at the Air Transat check-in counter
at Montréal-Trudeau airport, as the approximately 250 invited
passengers received their boarding passes. During the 90-minute flight,
joyful cries were heard as Santa Claus made a surprise appearance to
hand out presents to the wide-eyed children. A number of celebrities as
well as Santa's elves were also on board for the festivities.
"For Air Transat, organizing this event with the Children's Wish
Foundation, with the Holidays just around the corner, has become a real
tradition. It is very special to our employees and is an important part
of our corporate responsibility initiatives," said Jean-Francois Lemay,
General Manager, Air Transat. "We're proud to play a part in the
well-being of young children for whom illness is a daily struggle. I
would like to warmly thank our customers for their generosity, and our
flight crews for their co-operation and their enthusiasm. Thanks to
them, we have donated more than 5 million dollars to the Foundation
since our partnership was established in 2004."
For her part, Judith Dontigny, interim Director for the Children's Wish
Foundation in Montreal, said: "Creating magic, memorable moments is at
the heart of the Children's Wish Foundation's mission. With this
wonderful flight, made possible by Air Transat, we provide an
unforgettable experience for children and their family members who are
deeply affected by illness. Initiatives by partners like Air Transat
bring hope to sick children and allow us to fulfil our mission. Air
Transat has been a platinum partner of the Foundation for nine years
now, and we couldn't be more grateful for its help."
The Flight in Search of Santa is made possible thanks to the volunteer efforts of Air Transat
employees and the generous collaboration of various partners, including
Montréal-Trudeau, Toronto-Pearson and Calgary International airports.
Similar flights took off today from Toronto and Calgary.
This exceptional partnership reflects the efforts of Air Transat and its
parent company, Transat A.T. Inc., to increase their community
involvement in both their origin and destination markets. These efforts
are all about social engagement, environmental stewardship and measures
aimed at stimulating a tourism economy that is becoming increasingly
Small Change, Big Hearts
The Small Change, Big Hearts program is supported by donations of pocket change from passengers at
the end of every Air Transat flight. Since December 2009, funds raised
have been donated in equal parts to the Children's Wish Foundation and
to SOS Children's Villages, an international organization that cares
for orphaned and abandoned children in 133 countries.
About the Children's Wish Foundation
The Children's Wish Foundation grants their most heartfelt wish to
children aged 3 to 17 living with a life- threatening illness. Since
its beginnings in 1984, the Foundation has granted more than 20,000
wishes across Canada, some 6,500 of them Quebec. Moreover, the
Foundation is committed to never turning down an eligible child. This
year, the Children's Wish Foundation plans to grant over 1,000 new
wishes. For more information, visit www.childrenswish.ca.
About Air Transat
Air Transat is Canada's leading holiday travel airline. Every year, it
carries some 3 million passengers to nearly 60 destinations in 25
countries aboard its fleet of Airbus wide-body jets. The company
employs approximately 2,000 people. Air Transat is a business unit of
Transat A.T. Inc., an integrated international tour operator with more
than 60 destination countries and that distributes products in over 50
SOURCE Transat A.T. Inc.
Image with caption: "Air Transat and the Children's Wish Foundation took hundreds of children to the North Pole today, departing from Montreal, Toronto and Calgary, to bring Santa Claus back with them. On the photo: Santa Claus and a child sponsored by the Foundation. (CNW Group/Transat A.T. Inc.)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20131210_C9131_PHOTO_EN_34815.jpg
Image with caption: "Air Transat gave a cheque for $309,605 to the Children's Wish Foundation today. From left to right: Jean-François Lemay(General Manager, Air Transat), Roary the mascot, flanked by two elves, and Eric Gareau (Children's Wish Foundation). (CNW Group/Transat A.T. Inc.)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20131210_C9131_PHOTO_EN_34814.jpg