Toronto, Canada, April 05, 2009 --(PR.com
)-- G.A.P Adventures, the world’s leading adventure travel company, is spearheading a number of initiatives for Earth Month 2009 to raise awareness of the importance of minimizing environmental impact and travelling in a low impact and sustainable manner. The roots of Earth Month run deep at G.A.P Adventures, with its awareness campaign growing stronger each year.
“Weaving sustainability into every aspect of our operations and our travellers’ experience is the essence of G.A.P Adventures,” said Richard G. Edwards, Director of Planeterra, the non profit foundation founded by G.A.P Adventures. “Earth Month is an opportunity to question how as a business or as a traveller one can integrate sustainability into every decision, to not only lessen impact on ecosystems and other cultures, but to create positive impacts.
“Our experienced Product Development team and field offices have demonstrated a strong commitment to designing tours that ensure the protection of local people and the environment. Working in partnership with our local leaders and guides, we strive to operate our tours in a manner in which our dedication to sustainability is evident on every G.A.P Adventures trip.”
G.A.P Adventures Earth Month Activities
Dollar-A-Day program – Double the impact
In honour of Earth Month G.A.P Adventures will match each donation to its Dollar-A-Day program. This initiative provides travellers with the opportunity to donate one dollar per day for the duration of their tour with 100% of these proceeds going directly to support Planeterra projects.
Planeterra supports more than 25 local community projects, as well as non-profit organizations and international charities that focus on the areas of health, education, community development, environmental conservation and employment skills training.
Kenya Community Tourism Project: This project focuses on installing water tanks in a remote village in western Kenya. By purchasing and installing 3,000 litre water tanks, time and energy spent hauling water for survival in the past can now be invested in education, further agricultural production, and other economic activities.
Brazil Reforestation Program: Through a partnership with Trees for the Future, Planeterra is working with local communities in the development of a reforestation program, which seeks to improve living conditions and increase agricultural production in the area. The initiative includes training programs for 100 local farmers which teach practical techniques to manage land sustainably. Over the coming year they aim to plant over 1 million trees and native plant species in an effort to reduce the negative impact that deforestation has on climate change, while improving the living conditions of local people in the area.
New Delhi Street Kids Project: Through Planeterra’s partnership with Salaam Baalak Trust, scholarships are provided to young people who once lived and worked on the streets of Delhi.
Cuba Greening Project: This schoolyard greening program brings together elementary school principals, teachers and students in creating a natural green space on their school grounds.
G.A.P Adventures has taken numerous steps to reduce its impact on the environment. The company demonstrates its desire to be a responsible member of the local communities through the following initiatives:
Public Transportation Subsidy: In an effort to encourage Head Office staff to do their part to reduce air pollution, individuals who purchase passes for use on Toronto's public transportation system are provided with a monthly subsidy.
Supporting Green Energy: Head Office, and Toronto, Calgary, Melbourne and New York Concept Stores are all 100% powered by green energy providers including Bullfrogpower. These companies provide green electricity and purchase power exclusively from wind and low-impact hydro generators.
PEFC Certified Brochures: All G.A.P Adventures brochures are 100% PEFC certified. The PEFC Council (Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification schemes) is an international organization focused on promoting sustainable forest management.
Volunteer Adventures– Save 10%
Volunteer adventures are a way to give back to the communities and regions G.A.P Adventures visits. Travellers can make a difference to the local communities while taking a hands-on approach to bringing about positive change. G.A.P Adventures encourages travellers to experience this life-changing way of travel and is pleased to offer 10% off volunteer tours booked by April 30, 2009.
About G.A.P Adventures
G.A.P Adventures is a world leader in the adventure travel industry offering small group adventures on all seven continents and beyond to more than 85,000 global travellers annually. The award-winning trips, which focus on culture, nature and active travel, are ideal for those with a sense of adventure - people who want to leave the beaten path and authentically immerse themselves in a local culture or environment to experience the real world in a sustainable manner. Demonstrating its ongoing cultural, social and economic commitment to responsible tourism, G.A.P Adventures established the Planeterra Foundation, as a way the company and its passengers can give back to the communities visited. For more information, please visit www.gapadventures.com and www.planeterra.org.