H2O Patagonia Adventure Travel
Our commitment to you extends to our community. Providing incredible
luxury adventure travel experiences in Patagonia is only part
of our mission. At H2O Patagonia we also strive to be an integral
part of the communities in which we work. As part of our corporate
mission we donate a percentage of annual profits to local community
projects--be it funding local schools, generating entrepreneurial
opportunities, or assisting local social services. Below are just
a few recent initiatives:
1) H2O Patagonia recently ran a Christmas Poem contest in four
of the rural schools in Futaleufu. More than 70 entries from participants
from 5th-8th grade vied for cash prizes in excess of US$1,000.
Cash Prizes for first, second, and third place were granted to
the most creative poems by age group and were used to offset school
expenses and supplies for the lucky winners.
2) The H2O Patagonia Foundation was established at Johns Hopkins
School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) designed to assist
graduate students in Latin American Studies fray the cost of a
higher education. This years award recipient was Ms. Alejandra
Cervantes Paras from Mexico.
3.) We recently established the H2O Patagonia Scholarship at Dicksinon College in Pennsylvania to help needy students of Spanish or Latin American Studies cover the costs of college education and provide unique educational opportunities such as paid, on-site internships in Patagonia, Chile. H2O Patagonia's initiative was recently featured in the Dickinson Magazine.
4.) In April of 2007 we were pleased to welcome at H2O Patagonia a community service and cross-cultural exchange student group from Geneva, Switzerland. The students spent their days aiding with nature conservation, assisting the community with English lessons in two rural schools, planting trees and building a trail for locals, as well as learning about Chilean culture and way of life. Read more about the students' experiences.
We also work diligently to preserve the environment. In the
Futaleufu Valley this most often means protecting the Futaleufu
River from proposed dam projects. Currently three dam projects
threaten the river. These dams would drown the beautiful Futaleufu
Valley and obliterate the traditional lifestyle of the local
people. H2O Patagonia supports FutaFriends,
a non-profit organization working to end the threat of dams
on the Futaleufu.
We are also proud members of 1%
for the Planet, an alliance of environmentally conscience
businesses that donate 1% of their annual sales to the preservation
of the natural environment. At H2O Patagonia we are firm believers
that contributing to the health and welfare of our planet
makes good business sense and we encourage other businesses
to join as well.
|Additionally, we are members of The
International Ecotourism Society (TIES), an organization
which promotes responsible travel to natural areas that conserves
the environment and improves the well-being of local people.
TIES works to make tourism a viable tool for conservation,
poverty alleviation, protection of culture and bio-diversity,
sustainable development and educational, as well as enjoyable,
Our philosophy of corporate responsibility also includes taking
care of our amazing employees. We realize that without our
dedicated staff members, H2O Patagonia wouldn't be nearly
as special. We show our thanks by including employees with
three years service in our company's profit sharing program.
Community involvement, environmental protection, corporate responsibility... all part of the H2O Patagonia mission statement.
||Brian Ruszczyk, Founder:
Establishing H2O Patagonia is an expression of Brian's dual passion for adventure travel and the natural beauty of southern Chile. From a small town in Connecticut, he discovered Chile at fifteen when he spent a year in Santiago as an exchange student. During that time he became fluent in Spanish and irrevocably caught the bug for international travel. He has since spent fifteen years living and working in Mexico, Chile and Brazil, and currently resides in Europe.
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