At Stage and Screen we are very fortunate to be a part of something bigger than ourselves – a part of something that helps bring positive change to many communities through the work of the Flight Centre Foundation’s charity partners and FCTG’s Brighter Futures program.
Stage and Screen’s very own Marc Peacock from Victoria earned a ticket through a Brighter Futures’ initiative to Johannesburg to experience the biggest festival on the planet – the MANDELA 100 GLOBAL CITIZEN FESTIVAL!
To be eligible to accept this amazing prize the winner had to demonstrate how they were living one of the Brighter Futures pillars and show how their actions are creating positive change. Marc's winning entry (which was randomly selected from hundreds of entries from FCTG participating countries) focused on Stage and Screen’s commitment to mental health awareness. Marc has played a key role in raising the issue and a staunch advocate of mental health in the entertainment industry, and his trip winning post highlighted his commitment.
As part of the trip, Flight Centre Travel Group (FCTG), SolarBuddy, Global Citizen and Adopt-a-School Foundation came together to deliver thousands of LED solar lights to help brighten the lives of students across eight schools in Thari Safe Park, Botshabelo in Free State, South Africa.
The FCTG solar light delivery is part of the company’s Brighter Futures program that harnesses the collective impact of the company’s 20,000-strong global workforce. The initiative is one of the ways FCTG is bringing its company philosophy of ‘Brightness of Future’ to life, by building brighter futures in communities around the world.
In addition to the solar light delivery, FCTG staff and their corporate customers have helped to assemble some of the solar lights at key events throughout the year. Many clients partnered with FCTG’s corporate brands including FCM Travel Solutions, Corporate Traveller, Stage and Screen and Campus Travel have helped to build the solar lights at events such as the Illuminate conference held in Melbourne in September this year.
The SolarBuddy program raises awareness about energy poverty and the benefits of renewable energy. To date SolarBuddy, an Australian charity organisation, has delivered 63,000 lights to 21 countries in partnership with schools and leading organisations across the globe – positively impacting 320,000 lives.
The South African students, many of whom when the sun goes down have limited or no access to lighting, were presented with the solar lights on December 1, ahead of the Global Citizen Festival: Mandela 100. The festival was hosted by the Motsepe Foundation and celebrated Nelson Mandela’s legacy.
The first 300 lights were handed out to the students at their year-end party. The gifted LED solar lights are a SolarBuddy innovation that provide up to 16 hours of light and emit zero carbon emissions. They are a sustainable option that will minimise reliance on toxic kerosene during power outages, enabling children to complete their homework and improve their sense of safety and security after dusk.
The Thari program supports vulnerable women and children and aims to provide a safe environment for all students in communities plagued by high levels of unemployment, violence, crime and skills shortage. The provision of light also is so empowering as it enables children to do school work after dark – this one small improvement in education, can be the one small change that transforms the lives of millions.