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Sandals Resorts announces first voluntourism program

4th July 2011 Print

Sandals Resorts, in conjunction with The Sandals Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Sandals Resorts International (SRI), has launched Reading Road Trip, the resort company’s first official voluntourism program. 

Reading Road Trip is a volunteer literacy program aimed at improving listening, reading and comprehension skills of local children between the ages of 5 and 7, and expands on programming developed by the Sandals Foundation through their school adoption policy. 

Available to all guests of Sandals Resorts, Beaches Resorts or Grand Pineapple Beach Resorts ages 8 and up, Reading Road Trip is a two-hour program that takes guests into the community to one of the Foundation’s participating adopted basic and primary schools in Saint Lucia, Antigua, the Bahamas, Turks & Caicos or Jamaica to engage small groups of children in active reading strategies.  Facilitators will be on hand to guide participants on how to engage and encourage children.

“The chance to ‘give back’ has been a customer request for some time, so we are thrilled to finally be able to offer our guests the opportunity to take part in the work we consider so vitally important,” said Sandals Resorts International CEO and President of the Sandals Foundation’s Board of Directors, Adam Stewart.  

Reading Road Trip is offered every Thursday from 9am until 11am when schools are in session, September until mid-June.  The cost is US$20 per person, which covers round-trip transportation and all supplies.  Children 8-12 years of age can participate at no cost and all minors must be accompanied by an adult.  Volunteers are encouraged to bring along a favourite new or gently-used book to donate to the library of the school they visit.

“It’s an extraordinary thing to connect with the people of a place; to know them and to make a real difference in their lives,” says Stewart.  “This is our first step into developing programming that allows our guests to do just that.  I expect guests who participate will leave our resorts feeling fabulous – body and soul.”

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