Carnival Corporation Chairman’s Family Foundation pledge of aud$1.5m
Micky Arison, chairman of Carnival Corporation & plc (NYSE/LSE: CCL; NYSE: CUK), the world’s largest leisure and travel company, has pledged AUD$1.5 million through his family foundation to focus on the specific back-to-school needs of children badly affected by Australia’s disastrous bushfire season.
UNICEF Australia, a trusted champion for children, will receive AUD$1.2 million of the contribution from the Micky and Madeleine Arison Family Foundation to provide essential and targeted support for hundreds of children in families whose lives have been thrown into turmoil in the current bushfire emergency.
The family foundation will also support a separate project to help Australia’s unique wildlife as a result of the fires.
Hundreds of homes have been wiped out and schools destroyed in bushfires that have devastated communities in New South Wales, Victoria and South Australia.
The family foundation’s contribution is in addition to a AUD$350,000 donation from Carnival Australia to the Australian Red Cross Disaster Relief Andy Recovery Fund on behalf of its cruise lines, P&O Cruises Australia, Princess Cruises, Carnival Cruise Line, Cunard, Seabourn and Holland America Line, along with the corporation’s philanthropic arm, the Carnival Foundation.
P&O Cruises Australia and its guest-funded P&O Pacific Partnership has also donated AUD$50,000 to St Vincent de Paul’s bushfire relief efforts in New South Wales and Queensland.
This takes donations to bushfire relief overall to a total of AUD$1.9 million.
Carnival Australia President Sture Myrmell said the Arison family foundation’s commitment would focus on the specific needs of children in families who have lost everything or been badly affected during the disastrous bushfire season.
“There are hundreds of children who face the start of the school year in Australia having lost everything in this rolling natural disaster,” Mr Myrmell said.
“With only a few weeks to go before school resumes, the immediate needs of these children will be very specific including uniforms, textbooks, other education supplies and electronic learning devices but many will need long term support.
“UNICEF Australia explains that it is important for children who have lived through disasters to return to life as quickly as possible and one of those ways is to help them get back into the classroom and resume their education.
“These children need some resources to return to school and, over the medium to longer term, will need support to ensure they can have every chance possible to deal with the trauma they and their families have experienced as a result of these bushfires.”
UNICEF Australia CEO Tony Stuart said the Arison family’s welcome donation will provide timely and practical support for the specific back-to-school needs of children.
“In two short weeks, children will be heading back to school – but for some of the most fire-affected children, this will be a challenge having lost all their possessions,” Mr Stuart said.
“Getting them back to school is only the start. Many children will be deeply affected by trauma and their ability to learn and fully participate will hinge on whether they are adequately supported to heal and recover.”
UNICEF Australia is working with partners on the ground to target an immediate back-to-school bushfire relief package for school children who have lost everything.
UNICEF Australia’s response also includes supporting recovery. The bushfires have primarily affected rural and remote communities where specialist mental health services are often not available.
Working with partners, UNICEF Australia will facilitate the deployment of a range of child-focused clinical specialists to address this gap. The work will provide critical support to 25 small and regional communities in fire-affected areas.
Finally, UNICEF Australia’s bushfire response will provide the opportunity for young people to participate in and contribute to recovery and rehabilitation by coming together, sharing their experiences and working together to help frame solutions for future disaster events.
The Arison family foundation’s contribution to bushfire relief in Australia is similar to its donations in response to hurricanes and typhoons in other parts of the world. The foundation also contributed to relief efforts in Vanuatu following the devastation caused by Cyclone Pam in 2015.
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