In honor of World Cancer Day, Holland America Line announced that to date, the guests and employees of the company have raised more than $4.3 million for cancer support through “On Deck” programming that began in 2006.
Currently, the “On Deck for a Cause” program benefits six international cancer organizations located in the United States, Canada, Australia, Netherlands, Germany and United Kingdom.
On Deck for a Cause invites guests to participate in a noncompetitive 5k fundraising walk on every sailing aboard each of the line’s 15 ships, with proceeds distributed among the American Cancer Society, Canadian Cancer Society, Cancer Council Australia, Cancer Research UK, Deutsche Krebshilfe (German Cancer Aid) and KWF Kankerbestrijding (Dutch Cancer Society).
“Giving back is part of our corporate culture at Holland America Line, and On Deck for a Cause allows our guests and employees to join together for and make an impact for an important cause that touches us all,” said Orlando Ashford, president of Holland America Line. “To have surpassed $4.3 million is a huge milestone for our On Deck program, and with fundraising walks happening every cruise – more than 500 cruises a year – we are looking forward to raising even more to help fight cancer.”
Guests of all ages are invited to donate $20 to the Holland America Line Foundation. On a day at sea, participants join in a 5k walk around the ship’s decks. Guests may walk less or not at all, as they prefer. Participants also receive an On Deck for a Cause T-shirt, wristband and a reception following the walk. Depending on the ship, the distance to reach 5k ranges from nine to 12 laps.
In 2015, more than 500 On Deck for a Cause events will be held across the Holland America Line fleet, with walks taking place globally on cruises to the Mediterranean, Caribbean, South Pacific, Alaska’s Inside Passage, Mexico, Asia, the Baltic, Australia, New Zealand, Antarctica and South America.
Each year Holland America Line hosts more than 25 shipboard charity luncheons for nearly 5,000 guests in its homeport cities. In addition to the luncheons and events, Holland America Line and its corporate foundation’s charitable-giving programs include cash sponsorships, in-kind donations, free- and reduced-fare cruise donations for nonprofit fundraising events, donations of usable shipboard items around the world, employee volunteerism and other philanthropic activities.