Published on : Friday, October 18, 2019
The aptly named ‘Awesome Partnership’ kicked off at the start of September to coincide with IHG’s annual Giving for Good Month and will see the two organisations team up over the next two years to tackle waste minimisation and hospitality skills training, helping those in need.
By supporting OzHarvest’s Food Rescue program, IHG will prevent good food from hotels going to waste and using it to feed hungry Australians via a network of charities across Australia. The initiative minimises food waste and provides high quality, nutritious meals to those in need, and dramatically reduces the negative impact on the environment by lightening the load on landfill.
Additionally, IHG will sponsor at least ten at-risk 16 to 25-year olds to earn a Certificate II or III in Hospitality through the OzHarvest Nourish Program. The partnership gives the young Aussies an opportunity to gain on-the-job training at IHG hotels through mentoring, hotel visits, work experience and engagement opportunities with IHG’s food and beverage team. Filling the industry-wide talent gap in hospitality is a top priority for IHG, and the partnership will cultivate new talent through training and career opportunities.
Ronni Kahn AO, CEO and Founder, OzHarvest, commented: “I want to acknowledge and thank IHG for coming on board as one of our Awesome Partners. A partnership is valuable when values are aligned, and what’s so beautiful with IHG and OzHarvest is we are both committed to sustainability and the health and wellbeing of our community. Not only does it make sense that we work together to rescue surplus food and feed hungry Australians, it also means we can give more young people the opportunity to go through life-transforming skills training and get experience in an IHG hotel. It’s an extraordinary opportunity for a young person who would never have that experience without the synergies between IHG and OzHarvest.. We are so excited to be working closely with the passionate IHG family who share our vision to create a better world.”
Leanne Harwood, Managing Director Australasia and Japan, IHG, commented: “As one of the world’s leading hotel companies with over 5,700 hotels globally, we have a responsibility and an important role to play in contributing to a sustainable future. We put sustainability at the forefront of all our thinking and have made some big commitments to energy, water, food and plastic reduction – but we can’t do it alone. That’s why this partnership is so important to us. OzHarvest are the experts who already make a huge difference in Australia every day, so it made complete sense to partner with them.”
OzHarvest was selected as one of IHG’s global charitable partners to receive a share of money raised as part of Giving for Good month where, during the month of September, IHG’s hotel and corporate colleagues around the world raised more than $400,000 which will help to give back to the community and do the right thing by the environment.
In addition to the Partnership commitment and global Giving for Good contribution, IHG’s Australian hotels rallied together and raised a whopping $25,000 in September by holding barbeques, raffles, challenges and Dollar Diners.
Today’s announcement joins a turbocharged line-up of sustainable initiatives from IHG, both locally and globally that form the group’s broader sustainability agenda.
IHG’s commitment to sustainability
IHG’s prioritisation of sustainability is more than lip-service; it is a structured program of targeted, meaningful initiatives.
Its global ‘A Greener Stay’ initiative has been big win for both the environment and the bottom line. Guests are incentivised to opt out of housekeeping in return for IHG Rewards Club points for each night they stay – since the start of 2019 more than 17,100 room nights have been activated, saving up to 68,000 toiletries.
Earlier this year, IHG announced its entire hotel estate of almost 855,000 guest rooms will switch to bulk-size bathroom amenities, with the transition to be completed in 2021. This made IHG the first global hotel company whose brands have all committed to removing bathroom miniatures in favour of bulk-size amenities.
Additionally, IHG removed plastic straws from its hotels and a number of broader waste reduction initiatives are already in place. From reef-safe sunscreen in resorts to tree-planting for conference delegates, all IHG brands and hotels across the country have introduced and implemented a variety of sustainability initiatives to reduce waste, carbon footprint, energy and water via partnerships with local and ethical suppliers.