Holland America Line is launching a new initiative today for passengers to raise money for cancer charities, to coincide with World Cancer Day.
‘On Deck for a Cause’ will see all passengers sailing on board any of the cruise line’s 15 ships this year encouraged to walk 5km at some point during their cruise.
This equates to between nine and 12 times around the deck, depending on which ship they sail on.
Each guest will be asked to pay $20 to be involved, 80% of which will be donated to cancer charities in one of six countries: the UK, the US, Canada, Australia, Germany and the Netherlands.
The other 20% of the donation will go to fund the programme that includes guests being given ‘On Deck For A Cause’ T-shirts and wristbands, plus a drinks reception after guests have completed the distance.
UK managing director Lynn Narraway said: “Our goal is to raise loads of money for Cancer Research UK, to support research, screening, education and treatment programmes.
“Some of our guests will run, some will walk, but it’s all very jolly and everyone will be chatting. It builds fantastic camaraderie on board – there really will be such a great atmosphere.”
Nearly 500 On Deck For a Cause events will take place across the Holland America Line fleet in the coming year and Narraway said she would be repeating the initiative for travel agents when they visit the Rhinedaam in May, which is coming into Dover and other ports around the UK such as Liverpool, Newcastle, Belfast and Dublin.
“It would be great to get our agents partners also involved in raising money for Cancer Research UK too,” she said.
The cruise line’s executive vice president Rick Meadows said: “With this programme, Holland America Line supports the global fight against cancer.
“Giving back is part of our culture and it’s gratifying to be able to support these incredible organisations in six countries where the majority of our guests live.”
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