Corporate Social Responsibility
Tourism Toronto is committed to making a meaningful contribution to the social, environmental and business welfare of our community. In keeping with this goal, Tourism Toronto has developed programs in three areas of community and industry support:
- Families in need
- Student awards and training
Families in Need
Relax, Recharge, Renew is the primary program of the "families in need" aspect of our CSR efforts. RRR provides parents of children with special needs a much-deserved break. Tourism Toronto, with the assistance of members and partners, provides weekend packages for parents that include a limousine pick up, a two-night hotel stay, tickets to shows and museums and other attractions, and meals at local restaurants. Families benefit from these weekend breaks every week throughout the year.
The child with special needs is cared for in one of several high-quality, provincially-funded respite care centres. Under coordination of respiteservices.com, the remarkable respite care facilities partnered on this program are Safehaven, Bloorview Kids Rehab, Community Living Toronto, Erinoakkids, and York Special Services.
We could not do this without very generous contributions from our members. For a list of nearly 200 tourism businesses that have donated to this program please click here.
To read some of the feedback from the families click here.
Participating families are identified by respite providers. Families interested in learning more about the program and how to participate should contact their respite providers or respiteservices.com.
In just a few years of operation, Relax, Recharge, Renew has been recognized by a variety of prestigious local and international organizations for exceptional corporate social responsibility. Awards and recognition include:
- Community Service Award - Tourism Industry Association of Canada
- Power of A Silver Award - ASAE (U.S.-based association)
- Commitment to the Community Award – IMEX (presented in Frankfurt, Germany)
- CSR Award for Community Affairs - PR News (presented in Washington, D.C.)
- Tourism Innovator of the Year - Tourism Industry Association of Ontario
- Destination Champion – Destination Marketing Association International
The Toronto Star reported on the way the Relax, Recharge, Renew program is touching some very inspiring families. Click here to read the full article. Also, Hotel Interactive published a wonderful article about the program and a few of the members of the hospitality community who support it.
For more information please read the press release that announced the program.
Student Awards and Training
Tourism Toronto is active in developing the industry workforce for the Toronto region through Tourism Toronto Scholarships and Awards. The awards are given to students at nine colleges and universities across the region who are enrolled in a variety of tourism and hospitality programs. To be considered for the award, students must have high academic achievement and demonstrate an interest in working in local visitor service industries or roles that promote inbound tourism to the region. The schools Tourism Toronto is involved with are Brock University, University of Guelph, Ryerson University, George Brown College, Georgian College, Humber College, Mohawk College, Centennial College and Sheridan College.
In addition to financial awards for promising young students, Tourism Toronto offers internships and case study experiences to students in a wide range of fields, including event management, public relations, marketing and human behaviour.
Tourism Toronto takes its role in sustaining our world's resources seriously. We appreciate the impacts our industry can have, both positive and otherwise, on our local community and beyond. As a result, we have a wide variety of programs that improve our own performance and also encourage our members and partners to increase sustainable practices.
All travel by Tourism Toronto staff - as well as all flights purchased by Tourism Toronto for visiting clients and media - is carbon neutral. Tourism Toronto purchases carbon offsets for all flights, totaling more than 700,000 miles in 2008. The carbon offsets are reninvested in projects that include retrofitting older buildings to reduce harmful emissions.
We also run sustainability awareness sessions and informational events for our members and staff to share best practices and apply green principles to the hospitality industry. In 2008, we held our first Earth Day event where we partnered with the City of Toronto, the Direct Energy Centre and the Metro Toronto Convention Centre to plant more than 600 trees and 6,000 flowers at dozens of locations around the city.
Visit our green site to find out more details about our programs, as well as green tourism activities and our industry members who are leading the field in sustainable practices.
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