Hotels are at the centre of their communities, a focal point for economic and social activity. Just as they can be a place for communities to come together at times of celebration, they can also play a vital role by providing security and refuge when disaster strikes.
Our disaster relief efforts build on our long and proud history of helping local communities and our colleagues in times of need. We aim to provide a consistent response in our hotels and corporate offices, using our global partnership with CARE International to draw on their expertise in disaster preparedness and relief, guiding our hotels on how to respond.
In order to provide vital assistance and shelter in the immediate aftermath of disasters, we have a designated disaster relief fund. We can offer assistance to communities and our colleagues right away and do not have to wait for fundraising campaigns to take effect.
By using our global scale and the size of both our colleague and guest base, we are able to raise considerable funds. In 2015, we raised more than $775,000 for our disaster relief fund, enabling us to provide support following 27 disasters in 17 countries in 2015.
Disaster relief in South Carolina
In October 2015, South Carolina, US, experienced catastrophic flooding, and the weather system was labelled a 1-in-1,000 year event. Thousands of people were displaced with many experiencing irreparable damage to their homes. Through the American Red Cross, our disaster relief fund made a community donation to support on-the-ground relief efforts for local communities. In addition IHG also allocated funds to support 89 colleagues from IHG branded hotels and the Charleston Reservation Office impacted by the devastating flooding.
"You never think something like this will happen to you. The assistance helped tremendously with the clean up and getting things back to normal. We are so grateful to everyone for their donations."
Voice Agent, IHG Charleston Reservation Centre, South Carolina
In April and May, 2015, Nepal was struck by a series of earthquakes and aftershocks with the largest measuring 7.9 on the Richter scale. The devastation caused was severe with thousands of people losing their lives and countless others injured. IHG responded right away to offer support and made a donation to CARE International to support the local community in Nepal.
We also allocated funds to support our colleagues working at the Crowne Plaza Soaltee Kathmandu and hundreds of Nepalese colleagues working in IHG hotels across the globe whose homes and families had been affected. Immediately following the earthquake, we saw a tremendous surge of fundraising support. Colleagues in our hotels and offices set up fundraising events, meanwhile our IHG® Rewards Club members showed their support by donating their loyalty points to contribute toward relief efforts.