Sunday, April 22, 2012

IHG Partners with Clean the World

Summary: Participating IHG hotels in the United States and Canada will assist communities in reducing waste and stopping the spread of preventable diseases

IHG (InterContinental Hotels Group) [LON: IHG, NYSE: IHG (ADRs)], one of the world’s largest hotel groups, announced today a partnership with Clean the World to recycle partially-used soaps and bottled amenities from hotel guest rooms and distribute them in communities with limited access to hygiene products.


Clean the WorldFoundation Inc. is a 501 (c) (3) charitable organization that is committed to stopping the spread of preventable diseases by collecting, recycling and distributing hotel guest room amenities to children and families in the United States, Canada and more than 45 countries worldwide. Through its sustainable and socially responsible efforts, including a patented method of sterilizing soaps during the recycling process to remove potential germs and pathogens, Clean the World has helped divert more than 1.4 million lbs. of hotel waste from local landfills.
Through this partnership, IHG has the potential to add 3,274 properties in the United States and Canada, representing 407,840 rooms to Clean the World’s growing list of more than 1,400 hospitality partners throughout North America. IHG brands that can participate in the program include:


-
InterContinental® Hotels & Resorts
- Hotel Indigo®
- Crowne Plaza® Hotels & Resorts
- Holiday Inn® Hotels and Resorts
- Holiday Inn Express®
- Staybridge Suites®
- Candlewood Suites®
.

The agreement lends corporate support for all IHG brands to join the Clean the World hospitality partnership program, which provides implementation training, supplies and shipping for guest room amenities collected each day at participating properties. Nearly 70 IHG branded properties are already involved with Clean the World, and have helped collect 268,517 soap bars and divert more than 40.5 tons of hotel waste from local landfills.

Clean the World aligns well with IHG’s Green Engage program, a comprehensive online sustainability system which measures, manages and reports on the conservation efforts of individual properties within the IHG family of brands.  Through Green Engage, IHG has set a goal of reducing solid waste by 50 percent for each participating hotel.  By recycling hotel soaps and bottled amenities with Clean the World, participating IHG properties will make significant progress in meeting this goal, while improving living conditions for communities in need.

“Through programs like Green Engage and this new partnership with Clean the World, IHG continues to address our sustainability priorities at the hotel level,” says Paul Snyder, vice president, Corporate Responsibility, IHG. “Our hotel owners and guests have made eco-awareness a priority in their lives, and we welcome that kind of social responsibility in all that we do and offer throughout our brand portfolio. This partnership is a great opportunity to leverage our scale to both reduce the impact on the environment and provide a benefit for global communities.”

Each day, 9,000 children around the world die from acute respiratory illness and diarrheal diseases that can be prevented by washing with bar soap. Clean the World has a mission to put soap in the hands of people who need it most to improve and promote hygiene and sanitary living conditions and to lessen the impact of disease.

“IHG brings its impressive and well-known portfolio of hotels to our global hygiene revolution,” says Shawn Seipler, Co-founder and CEO at Clean the World. “By recognizing the value of amenities recycling, and encouraging individual IHG properties to join our partnership program, IHG displays tremendous corporate support for social responsibility and a concern for protecting our planet. As a leader in the global hospitality industry, IHG’s embrace of Clean the World will signal to its loyal guests that sustainability is a shared commitment, and that every day is Earth Day when you stay at an IHG hotel.”
Clean the World recently achieved a major milestone with the global distribution of more than 10 million soap bars in just three years of operation. The soaps are often packaged as part of sustainable hygiene kits, which include recycled bottled amenities and other hygiene-related items collected from Clean the World hotel partners throughout North America. Recent distributions of soaps and hygiene kits have been made to communities in Dominican Republic, East Timor, Ethiopia, Ghana, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, India, Kenya, Madagascar, Nicaragua and Sierra Leone.

About Clean the World Foundation Inc.
Clean the World Foundation Inc. is a 501 (c) (3) charitable organization. The Foundation executes its mission of saving millions of lives around the globe by leading a global hygiene revolution to distribute recycled soap and hygiene products to children and families suffering from high death rates due to the top two killers of children worldwide – acute respiratory infection (pneumonia) and diarrheal diseases (cholera). For more information visit:
www.cleantheworld.org. Text CLEAN to 20222 to donate $10 to help Clean the World (Messaging and data rates apply). Follow us on Facebook and Twitter for more updates on how you can help save lives with soap.

About InterContinental Hotels Group
IHG (InterContinental Hotels Group) [LON:IHG, NYSE:IHG (ADRs)] is a global organization with nine hotel brands including InterContinental® Hotels & Resorts, Hotel Indigo®, Crowne Plaza® Hotels & Resorts, Holiday Inn® Hotels and Resorts, Holiday Inn Express®, Staybridge Suites®, Candlewood Suites®, as well as our two newest brands, EVEN™ Hotels and HUALUXE™ Hotels & Resorts. IHG also manages Priority Club® Rewards, the world's first and largest hotel loyalty program with over 63 million members worldwide.

IHG franchises, leases, manages or owns over 4,400 hotels and more than 658,000 guest rooms in nearly 100 countries and territories, and has more than 1,100 hotels in its development pipeline.

IHG expects to recruit around 90,000 new people worldwide across its estate over the next few years and is committed to gender balance throughout its business. We aspire to continue retaining a minimum of 25% female representation on the Board.

InterContinental Hotels Group PLC is the Group's holding company and is incorporated in Great Britain and registered in England and Wales.

Visit www.ihg.com for hotel information and reservations and www.priorityclub.com for more on Priority Club Rewards. For our latest news, visit www.ihg.com/media, www.twitter.com/ihgplc or www.youtube.com/ihgplc.


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Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Raising the Bar on Health and Hygiene in Guatemala

If ever you feel down in the dumps, consider the people who live there.

Clean the World and several passionate hospitality partners traveled to Guatemala in March to distribute freshly pressed soap bars to children and families in disadvantaged communities, some of whom live in the dumps -- literally.

Accompanying Clean the World staff members Rosanna Kingston and Holly Boland on this particular soap distribution trip were William Kellock and Becki Greif from Concord Hospitality, Keith Levit and Lois Hefling from Lakeview Hotels & Resorts in Canada, and Blair and Brooke Christianson from Canalta Hotels in Canada.

Venturing into the landfill to find families in need of better hygiene was simple in theory, but difficult in practice. The roughly 20,000 individuals who live on the edge of the Guatemala City Dumps struggle daily for survival, and the gift of a fresh bar of soap is a welcome and necessary hygiene product to stop the spread of disease, and also a bit of fresh-smelling hope for a cleaner, healthier life.

Demand for hygiene products is immense in this very poor region of Guatemala where children often pick through the landfill trash to find food, clothing, and other basic items just to survive. While it is difficult to imagine the daily struggles faced by individuals living in such poverty, it was a relief to see the smiles on faces of many, particularly the children, when they received soaps distributed by Clean the World and its adventurous partners in hygiene.

Keith Levit, president of Lakeview Hotels, is also a professional photographer. He captured many of the dramatic images of this soap distribution journey, which are highlighted in this photo gallery.

A total of nearly 13,000 soap bars were distributed in various locations surrounding Guatemala City, including 5,000 at the Guatemala City Dumps; 5,000 at Maria Teresa Ghetto; 2,000 at Hogar Solidario Virgen de la Esperanza Orphanage in Guatemala City; and nearly 1,000 at Dorie's Promise Guatemala Orphanage.

The visit to Dorie's Promise, a privately-run orphanage owned by Forever Changed International from which 400 orphans have been adopted into loving homes, really had an impact on at least one member of the group.

“It is incredible for me to see how they have been able to look out for these children, giving them a better life than they clearly had before,” says Concord Hospitality's Kellock. “I am looking for the opportunity to spread the word about the great work that is being done here.”

Clean the World has scheduled a second trip to Guatemala in late April, which will feature more soap distribution adventures and include hospitality partners from Starwood Hotels & Resorts and Clean the World celebrity spokesperson Mariana Klaveno.

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Monday, April 16, 2012

Starwood Passes Sustainability Milestone


Summary:
Starwood Hotels & Resorts Passes Sustainability Milestone with Clean the World – More than 50,000 Hotel Rooms Recycling Soaps and Bottled Amenities



Collection of guest room amenities in less than one year exceeds 278,000 lbs. of hygiene products recycled and distributed to stop the spread of preventable diseases worldwide


Less than one year after becoming corporate partners, Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. (NYSE: HOT) has reached a significant sustainability milestone with Clean the World Foundation Inc.

Starwood, one of the world’s leading hotel and leisure companies, has surpassed 50,000 hotel rooms participating in the Clean the World amenities recycling program. The hotel rooms represent nearly 30 percent of the total Starwood properties in North America.

Clean the World and Starwood announced a corporate partnership on Earth Day, 2011. Since joining Clean the World’s hospitality partnership program, Starwood properties have contributed more than 278,000 lbs. of hygiene products – soaps, shampoos, conditioners, body washes, and lotions – which would have been discarded as trash were it not for recycling efforts provided by Clean the World.

Clean the World Foundation Inc. is a 501 (c) (3) charitable organization committed to stopping the spread of preventable diseases by collecting, recycling and distributing hotel guest room amenities to children and families in the United States, Canada, and more than 45 countries. Additionally, Clean the World has helped divert more than 1.4 million lbs. of hotel waste from local landfills through its sustainable and socially responsible efforts.

Through a series of webinars with Starwood properties and a strategic internal marketing and communications campaign, Starwood has steadily added properties to Clean the World’s growing list of more than 1,300 hospitality partners in North America. There are now 150 Starwood properties, representing all brands, enrolled in the Clean the World amenities recycling program, up from 31 individual properties when the corporate agreement was announced last year.

“Our goal in the first year of participation with Clean the World was to achieve 25% adoption among our North American properties, and we have exceeded that goal,” says Jennifer Bauchner, director of rooms and sustainability, Starwood North America Operations. “Once our property managers understand the environmental and social impact of amenities recycling and how that leads to employee engagement and customer interest , they are eager  to support Clean the World.”

Each day 9,000 children around the world die from diseases such as acute respiratory illness and diarrheal diseases that can be prevented by washing with bar soap. Clean the World has a mission to put soap in the hands of people who need it most to improve hygiene and sanitation conditions and to lessen the impact of disease and promote better hygiene and living conditions worldwide.
“Starwood has been a remarkable partner from the start and this milestone is an example of how corporate support can lead to adoption of sustainable and socially responsible initiatives at individual properties,” says Shawn Seipler, co-founder at CEO at Clean the World. “As our first corporate partner, Starwood recognizes the value of our comprehensive amenities recycling program and the social good it can provide with the proper encouragement and investment on the local level.”

Clean the World recently achieved a major milestone with the global distribution of more than 10 million soap bars in just three years of operation. The soaps are often packaged as part of sustainable hygiene kits, which include recycled bottled amenities and other hygiene-related items collected from Clean the World hotel partners throughout North America. Recent distributions of soaps and hygiene kits have been made in East Timor, Ethiopia, Ghana, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, India, Madagascar, Nicaragua, and Sierra Leone.

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National Volunteer Week - April 15-21

While it seems like every week is volunteer week at Clean the World, the calendar makes this one official.

April 15-21 is National Volunteer Week and there will be a lot of soap recycling going on in Orlando and Las Vegas to help advance our global hygiene revolution.

More than 5,000 volunteers have helped Clean the World recycle and distribute more than 10 million soap bars in just three years of operation. We'd love to welcome another 5,000 this year alone to help us grow exponentially in the immediate future to address the hygiene needs of children and families worldwide. In fact, we love volunteers so much we even created a video about them. Click here!

Rosanna Kingston, volunteer coordinator at Clean the World headquarters in Orlando, anticipates increased participation among school, church and community groups in the coming months.

"We're heading toward the end of the school year and many students are trying to accumulate community service credits," she says. "We always welcome students and adults to help us sanitize soap, sort bottled amenities, and help us put together hygiene kits for distribution in disadvantaged communities. I think we'll see more activity during National Volunteer Week and through the Spring and Summer months as we continue to save lives with soap."

Volunteer opportunities also exist in Clean the World's Las Vegas facility where volunteer coordinator Kevin Williams regularly sets bottled amenities aside for eager volunteers.

"There are so many bottles to sort and separate -- shampoos, conditioners, body lotions and body washes," he says. "With so many amenities coming in from each day from our generous Western regional partners, there is no shortage of volunteer opportunities for anyone willing to jump in and give us a hand."

Clean the World volunteers are encouraged to join us this Saturday, April 21, in Orlando at a Volunteer Carnival sponsored by Heart of Florida United Way. Volunteers will staff the Clean the World booth and help assemble 150 hygiene kits for homeless individuals and disadvantaged children in central Florida.

If you'd like to join in the volunteer fun this week or any other, please contact Rosanna Kingston (rkingston@cleantheworld.org) in Orlando or Kevin Williams (kwilliams@cleantheworld.org) in Las Vegas to schedule a volunteer visit and help Clean the World.

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Concord CEO's Call to Action: Clean the World

We love sharing stories of passionate support and satisfaction from our Clean the World hospitality partners. This blog post by Mark Laport, CEO at Concord Hospitality Enterprise Company provides a great illustration.

Concord Hospitality manages 83 hotels and 11,000 guestrooms and suites throughout the United States and Canada.


Laport offers a call to action for all Concord Hospitality properties, encouraging participation in Clean the World's hospitality partnership program by highlighting the contributions several properties have made since the start of this sustainability partnership less than one year ago.

The collection of hotel soaps and bottled amenities is having a dramatic impact on hygiene worldwide, and it's being recognized at the corporate level among Concord Hospitality executives.
Here's an excerpt from his blog:
"Our hotels already have donated enough remaining product to provide a month’s worth of soap to nearly 3,200 children. It takes a little organizing to get the program underway at a hotel, but it is neither costly nor time-consuming. The return on your effort really makes a difference. When you consider that every day 9,000 kids die from diseases that can be prevented by simple, good hygiene; this seems like a no-brainer. Couple that with the knowledge that all those plastic bottles aren’t going to a landfill… how could you not participate?"

Laport's support and his ongoing encouragement are infectious. By promoting Clean the World among Concord Hospitality partners, those properties are helping reinforce their commitments to social responsibility on behalf of their loyal guests. Each property also gets an opportunity to reduce contributions to the waste stream, protecting our planet by recycling hotel waste instead of throwing it away, and giving Clean the World an opportunity to turn trash into treasure and help stop the spread of preventable diseases worldwide.

Again, as Laport writes: "Clean the World is launching a hygiene revolution and we, as an industry, can play a major role in their success. It is not brain surgery, but it does save lives. Won’t you join us?"

Thanks for helping Clean the World.

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One Clean Year with Joie de Vivre Hotels


As we approach Earth Day (April 22), Joie De Vivre Hotels marks its first anniversary as a Clean the World hospitality partner.

Joie de Vivre Hotels has 28 properties participating in the Clean the World program, most of which are in California. JDV Hotels is California's largest boutique hotel collection with 27 properties in the state, all of which participate in the Clean the World hospitality partnership program to recycle soaps and bottled amenities and save lives.
In its first year as a corporate partner JDV Hotels has collected 54,453 soap bars (10,210 lbs.) and 6,751 lbs. of bottled amenities (shampoos, conditioners, body washes, body lotions) to help Clean the World.

The 28 participating properties (27 in California, one in Arizona) have combined do diver nearly 17,000 lbs. (8.5 tons!) of hotel waste from polluting local landfills.

As the JDV Hotels website indicates, "Joie de Vivre's brand personality has a lot in common with the California lifestyle experience: it’s fresh, inventive, casual, and grass-roots oriented." Participation in the Clean the World program just adds to that wholesome, eco-friendly California experience.

In just three years of operation Clean the World has collected, recycled, and distributed more than 10 million soap bars from more than 1,400 hospitality partners throughout North America. The soaps have been distributed to children and families in disadvantaged communities of the United States, Canada, and more than 45 countries.

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Friday, April 13, 2012

Tons of Soap Success at Walt Disney World Resorts

The Walt Disney World Resorts, which include all properties in Florida, California, and a new resort in Hawaii, are flexing their collective muscle with regard to helping Clean the World.
And they'll need all the muscle they can get to lift such an impressive amount of soaps and bottled amenities.

Since becoming one of Clean the World's first hospitality partners, the Disney properties have combined to collect an astounding 565,509 bars of soap (106,166 lbs. or 53 tons ) to help stop the spread of preventable diseases worldwide. By also collecting bottled amenities, Walt Disney World Resorts have helped divert more than 173,000 lbs. (86.5 tons) of hotel waste from polluting local landfills.

Just for fun, consider what those 86.5 tons of hotel waste would represent in creative terms:
- 1.73 million golf balls (Disney resorts have great golf courses. You'll need to shower after playing)
- 72,083 smoked turkey legs (a Disney theme park treat)
- 1 really clean, great-smelling Space Shuttle (with plenty of leftover soap bars to fight preventable diseases in outer space)

Mickey Mouse must be proud.

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Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Kalahari Resorts Goes 'Beyond Expectations'

The tagline tells the story. Our partners at Kalahari Resorts have gone “Beyond Expectations” by collecting more than two tons of amenities in the first three months since partnering with Clean the World.
Kalahari Resorts in Wisconsin Dells, Wisc., an authentically African-themed resort, collected 16,969 soap bars (2,891 lbs.) in less than 90 days. Together with the bottled amenities, Kalahari Resorts has helped divert nearly 5,000 lbs. (2.5 tons) of hotel waste from polluting local landfills.

Clean the World has a mission to stop the spread of fatal, but preventable, diseases worldwide by collecting, recycling, and distributing hotel soaps. Soaps have proven themselves in clinical studies to stop by up to 60 percent the 3.5 million hygiene-related deaths that occur annually in communities where soap is in short supply.

In three years Clean the World has distributed more than 10 million soap bars to children and families in the United States, Canada, and more than 45 countries.

“I am proud of our company for partnering with such a terrific organization as Clean the World, and I am moved by the degree to which the team of dedicated Kalahari associates has embraced the program,” says Greg Sherrill, rooms division manager at Kalahari Resorts - Wisconsin Dells.
“It’s a pleasure to work with Clean the World. We look forward to saving many more lives together.”

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Monday, April 2, 2012

Hygiene Kits: Global Vision, Local Impact

Clean the World recently distributed more than 800 hygiene kits to homeless individuals at the Christian Service Center in Orlando, Fla.

The hygiene kits contained bars of soap, bottled amenities, and vanity kits provided by hospitality partners participating in the Clean the World program.

The ROI for the event was immediate as the hygiene kits were enthusiastically received by those in attendance.

“Our people often ask for soaps and other hygiene-related items because it’s hard to keep clean on the streets,” says Mary Lynn Walker, director of development and communications at the Christian Service Center. “Keeping your body clean is a basic need, and Clean the World has helped us distribute more than 3,000 hygiene kits this year to homeless individuals, families and students in local schools. We are impressed that Clean the World thinks globally, but also acts locally to help people in need.”

Christian Service Center helped deliver comfort to more than 12,000 homeless families in 2011.

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