Qantas has become the latest corporate giant to throw its support behind farmers and plans to, along with its customers, donate $3 million to help provide relief to Australia’s drought affected farming communities.
The national carrier has announced a partnership with charity Rural Aid to help fund hay bales, water trucking, groceries and mental health counsellors for farming communities.
Its efforts will include a specialist fundraising venture with two special fundraising charter flights from Sydney to Longreach and Tamworth in October.
These will be operated by volunteer Qantas crew with revenue given directly to Rural Aid’s initiatives. Tickets to Longreach will be on sale from today via Qantas.com.
The program also includes an immediate $1 million cash donation by Qantas to Rural Aid, followed by a number of Qantas and Jetstar appeal initiatives to raise another $1 million with the help of customers.
Qantas says it will then match these fundraising efforts, with the aim of providing the charity with a total donation of $3 million by the end of 2018.
Among the fundraising initiatives:
• Qantas Frequent Flyers can use their Qantas Points to support farmers, with Rural Aid being added to the list of charity redemption partners on its Rewards Store.
• Qantas will support its employees to join Rural Aid’s Farm Rescue program and volunteer their time repairing farming equipment, fixing homes and building fences on rural properties around Australia.
• Rural Aid collection barrels will be placed in Qantas lounges and at Qantas and Jetstar gates for customers to donate, with on-board announcements to raise awareness. The airline will also host monthly “Chops for Change” pop-ups at various lounges around the country where guests will be offered gourmet lamb chops in exchange for a small donation.
• A formal partnership with Rural Aid to provide flights for representatives to travel to regional communities.