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  • 15 Dec 2022 11:46 | Bosco (Administrator)

    Lilian Jouni is a 14 years old Lebanese-Ethiopian student that attends the Masar community center daily. She lives with her mother and sister in Sur, Lebanon while her father lives abroad maintaining limited contact with his children.

    Due to challenges of accessing formal papers, Lilian was unable to register in formal schooling. Her mom, who works daily cleaning houses to make a living for her and her children, was so eager for her daughters to gain an education that she hired a home tutor so they could learn to read and write. For Lilian, it was never enough. She was unhappy since she was never able to make friends or experience what it was like to go to school. Her mother learned of the Masar community center and asked if she could enroll Lilian and her sister Zainab in the informal education program so they could be as “close to a "normal life as possible.”

    Since then Lilian and her sister have had no trouble integrating with their classmates and making new friends, they express positivity and dedication to learning that was witnessed strongly by the teachers. Lilian claims that "the center is her happy place" because she gets to experience what she was unable to as a child growing up. She claims it is also her “safe space” because at the center she doesn’t face any bullying as she does in her own community, mainly due to racism and discrimination, with most people outside viewing her as “inferior.” Lilian is currently enrolled in the music and digital training programs, and Mourjjan4Children's Creative Workshop. Lilian aspires to be a doctor in the future and believes that studying and education are the first steps towards success.


  • 29 Nov 2022 12:49 | Bosco (Administrator)


    DER Touristik Suisse launches third school construction project

    For the third time after 2018 and 2019, DER Touristik Suisse is supporting a school construction project of the FLY & HELP foundation. The latest project is for a project in northern Namibia and is being driven by business travel specialist Kuoni Business Travel. A talk by FLY&HELP founder Reiner Meutsch in Zurich marked the start of the collaboration and generated donations of around CHF 15,000.

    The Kuoni brands are continuing their collaboration with FLY & HELP, an aid organisation specialising in school construction projects in developing countries. This year and next, Kuoni Business Travel is carrying out various activities to finance a project in northern Namibia, where the cold in winter and the heat in summer make it difficult to run schools in an orderly manner. The construction of buildings and the securing of teachers' salaries are at the heart of the project, which is also receiving support from local partners and authorities.

    15,000 Swiss francs thanks to a lecture evening in Zurich

    A lecture evening by FLY & HELP founder Reiner Meutsch in Zurich last week generated an initial donation of CHF 15,000 for the project. Kuoni Business Travel financed free tickets for the event and also made a contribution of CHF 10,000 to the aid organisation. The 150 or so visitors contributed to the continued financing of the school construction project, for example by making donations or buying merchandising articles. Further activities initiated by the business travel specialist of DER Touristik Suisse to support the project are planned for 2023.

    Already made possible by DER Touristik Suisse and its brands were the construction of a primary school in Cambodia at the beginning of 2018 and the extension of a pre-school in Namibia in 2019.

  • 29 Nov 2022 12:46 | Bosco (Administrator)


    Ghazalas Story

    Ghazala first came to the community center with her family in 2019 in hopes to be involved in Swiss4Lebanons informal education activities. At the time, Ghazala was 7 years old, and, like her elder brother and father, suffered from profound bilateral sensorial hearing loss. Her family, who fled from Syria just before the war in 2010, was unable to afford tending to Ghazala’s hearing condition.

    Teachers at our community center welcomed Ghazala and tried as much as possible to involve her in activities, yet any full and active engagement could only happen by first treating Ghazala’s condition. As local staff began to witness similar cases as Ghazala, S4L realized the necessity of opening a special needs classroom in order to cater to children with learning difficulties and special needs. Ghazala was one of the first children to receive assistance. In April 2021, her and two other children visited a specialty hospital in Beirut to assess the level of hearing loss. The doctor presented Ghazala with two options, to first try a high power bilateral hearing aid, yet given the very late intervention, there was a probability the hearing aid would not provide the desired result. In case of the latter, Ghazala would have to undergo the second option, which would be a cochlear implant for improved hearing. Accordingly, it was decided that Ghazala first try the hearing aid for a period of three months in conjunction with intensive speech therapy sessions. If there were signs of limited to no improvement, an implant would be required.

    S4L carried out all the necessary measures to ensure that Ghazala’s hearing loss would be gradually improved and restored. A bilateral hearing aid was installed on April 6, 2021, with follow-up consultations to confirm proper usage and handling of the hearing aid. A speech therapist carried out an assessment to detect the level of speech and language disorder associated with Ghazala’s hearing impairment in early June. The assessment showed significant difficulty in the domains of articulation, phonology, and oral language (vocabulary and syntax were limited to one word sentences), and hence, speech therapy sessions were scheduled for Ghazala twice a week. Seven months into working closely with Ghazala, the level of improvement exceeded all expert expectations. Ghazala can now produce phrases of 3-4 words on demand with no visual support. Articulation of the sounds “k, ħ, s” has been attained with visual prompts and the sounds “x, z, r” are in progress. Intelligibility of speech is improved even for some complex and/or long words. Further intervention and support is needed to maintain progress and improve communication. As reinforcement, Ghazala attends the special needs classroom at the community center three times a week where her learning is enhanced.

    Ghazala has acquired a stronger sense of self and confidence and she is no longer the timid and cautious girl she used to be. She shows an unyielding commitment and determination to grow despite the hardships and dire living conditions she endures. In the summer of 2021, Ghazala’s mother passed away due to COVID without getting the chance to witness Ghazala’s progress. Her only worry was Ghazala’s future, and her only wish was that she would become empowered through treating her impairment and accessing education.

    Ghazala continues to demonstrate true potential and a passion for learning in hopes that she has the brighter future her mother desired for her.

    Links to film and documentary:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m_e73ykVvCg

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YLw-SXwzhQU

     

    Schweizer Fernsehen SRF Sendung Mitenand: https://www.srf.ch/play/tv/mitenand/video/libanon---eine-schule-fuer-fluechtlingskinder?urn=urn:srf:video:8ccab300-07bd-4849-a1c1-1ac7781c8003


  • 29 Nov 2022 12:39 | Bosco (Administrator)


    23 November 2022, Brussels.

    Press Release: Let’s unlock efficiency and sustainability gains through the full digital transformation of business says BT4Europe

     

    BT4Europe, the European Network of Business Travel Associations, today launched a Position Paper on Digital Transformation in Business Travel.

    BT4Europe, represents European buyers and users of business travel services, is urging EU regulators to promote the full digital transformation of business travel. The business travel industry, with millions of Europeans travelling on business every year, sustains thousands of jobs across Europe and is vital to our economies and our societies. Full digital transformation will unlock efficiency and sustainability gains.

    This Position Paper, developed by BT4Europe’s Digital Transformation Working Group, urges EU regulators to ensure the forthcoming EU initiatives on passenger rights and multimodal digital mobility services (MDMS) to promote the full digital transformation of business travel. BT4Europe is also urging the EU to make use of the digital transformation to exempt business travel from the bureaucratic A1 cross-border social security form.

    ‘BT4Europe is arguing for nothing short of the full digital transformation of business travel to facilitate seamless paper free cross-border business travel. In our Position Paper we set out the key challenges to achieving the sector’s digital transformation, assess how they should be addressed and make recommendations for action. We invite the entire travel sector to support these recommendations and the EU to take action to implement them.’ says Patrick W. Diemer, Chair of BT4Europe.

    ‘The EU’s forthcoming initiatives on multimodal digital mobility services and passenger rights represent a timely opportunity to make sustainable, connected and automated multimodal mobility a reality. For instance by making it possible for passengers to buy a single ticket for multimodal and cross-border journeys. Smarter mobility will strengthen passenger rights and promote sustainable travel options and doing away with paperwork such as the bureaucratic A1 Social Security Form, will boost our economy’, says Dominic Short, Chair of the BT4Europe’s Digital Transformation Working Group.

     

    Dominic Short concluded, ‘All stakeholders – business, citizens and the European Union must work together to seize the benefits of full digital transformation in the up coming EU proposals, to unlock efficiency and sustainability gains, to benefit business travellers, economy, and the environment.‘

    Patrick W. Diemer and Dominic Short are available for interview.

    For more information on the press release please contact markwatts@lpbrussels.com

     

    For more information on the European Network of Business Travel Associations, and to obtain a copy of the position paper please contact mail@BT4Europe.com


  • 31 Oct 2022 10:11 | Bosco (Administrator)

    READ THE PRESS RELEASE

    Some more additional information:

    Who is One Global?

    One Global is a company owned by both World Travel Inc (WTI) and Clarity and is a community of world leading TMC’s, who have partnered to provide true, global travel management services to SME’s and emerging global businesses through local expertise, best in market reputations and global technologies.

    Why did Clarity and World Travel decide to create the JV – One Global and why Kuoni Business Travel joined?

    For many years TMC's have been adapting their offering to meet the needs of global customers and created various types of network models, however, clients are wanting and needing true global solutions and there has always been gaps around 1) global technologies 2) globally consistent servicing 3) something different to the model the mega agencies offer.

    With Covid really turning our industry upside down, for many TMC's around the world, the focus continues to be on recovery and rightly so. For both WTI and Clarity who have been part of various networks in the past, it presented an opportunity to create a global community consisting of best in market TMC's, who share our values, with true global technologies and servicing solutions, which is what clients both expect and need. Importantly, the creation of One Global provides both Clarity and WTI with the ability to retain more business, when our existing clients expand into other markets as well as win new business. And for us the most important reason:  How is One Global different from other TMC’s and Networks?

    Mega TMC’s and Networks that cover multiple markets are very rigid in their approach, forcing clients to conform to their specific service models and technologies.

    One Global is entirely different and built to offer greater flexibility and depth than the rest of the global players. Our focus is being consistent where it matters and different where needed.

    One Global is consistent in the right places:

    • Point of entry
    • Profile & Policy-
    • Online Booking Tool
    • Service levels-Content
    • Duty of care


  • 31 Oct 2022 10:06 | Bosco (Administrator)

    Hozaifa Ibrahim, a 13-year-old boy, is one of the many Syrian children who had to flee their homes when the violence started in Syria.

    Hozaifa lives in Masakin-Tyre, South Lebanon with his parents and two youngest sisters. His father is a tile installer who recently suffered a work injury and had to rest at home. His mother is a housewife who takes care of the house and the kids. Hozaifa, as the eldest son, is required to assist his father in earning money, therefore he works a few days a week at a grocery store in Al Bas Camp.

    On other days, he participates in the informal education program at the Nour Community Center of Swiss4Lebanon, and then attends a regular school in the afternoon. Teachers at the center frequently hear Hozaifa comparing the center to the school he attends, claiming that the center is more fun and that he learns more there, while he complains that the teachers at the official school do not provide him with adequate knowledge and information.

    Some month ago, Hozaifa took part in Mourjjan4Children's Creative workshop. The program's goal is to bring together Lebanese, Syrian, and Palestinian youth to help them overcome their differences and work together constructively. It enables the kids to express their feelings and opinions via art without fear of being judged.

    Hozaifa struggled at first to work in a group and share things with his friends. He even admitted to one of the coordinators that he preferred working on his own. Hozaifa was able to work in a group at the end of the workshop and even discuss small discoveries he made as well as his feelings. Hozaifa returned to the center the next day, eager to inform his peers about his workshop experience. He even said to one of the teachers, "Yesterday was the best day of my life!" referring to the workshop's last day.  Mourjjan4Children's creative workshop had such an impression on Hozaifa that he is always wondering when the next round would begin.


  • 31 Oct 2022 09:49 | Bosco (Administrator)


    Ladies and Gentlemen

    Today we're pleased to draw your attention to a very special event in Zurich. The cooperation with the Reiner Meutsch Foundation FLY & HELP is a matter close to our hearts. We want to do something good for the people in the regions we travel to and promote educational opportunities in developing countries by building schools.

    With us you can experience Reiner Meutsch personally and learn many impressions of his work and the history behind it.

    Secure a seat for his one-of-a-kind live show "Adventure World Tour" in Zurich and listen to his impressive experiences from countless countries!

    For you as a customer of Kuoni Business Travel and a member of the ASTM, the ticket price is of course free of charge.

    Fly & Help

    «Around the world adventure» 

    with Reiner Meutsch and international artists

    100,000 flight kilometers for a good cause

    Having started out in snow and ice in January 2010, the pilot Reiner Meutsch returns to his native Westerwald after a ten-month trip around the world. In a fascinating two-hour live show, he takes you on the journey of his life with colorful pictures, entertaining videos and a very personal live moderation. World-class musicians and acrobats from different continents accompany his lively stories.

    Location: Hotel Baur au Lac

    Date: Monday 14 November 2022

    Admission: 6.30 p.m

    Start:  7.30 p.m

    End: approx. 10 p.m. (incl. 20 min. break)

    Ticket price: Advance online booking €15 / box office €18

    Language: German


    Join us on a spectacular journey around the world and order your ticket today: order tickets

    order tickets

    Part of the live show will benefit the Reiner Meutsch "Fly & Help" foundation. That is why we would like to make our contribution.

    Kuoni Business Travel & ASTM will cover the cost of the tickets for you. Enter the promo code AW22 when ordering, we will double the amount for every ticket you have paid for and donate it to the foundation.

    We are really looking forward to your coming, you can expect 150 unforgettable minutes full of emotions and adventurous stories.


    The ASTM & Kuoni Business Travel




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