Established on a ‘caring capitalism’ business model, POP (an acronym for People Over Profit) will donate a minimum of 51% of its profits to fund social projects in both the UK and India. In addition to providing an enhanced-value flying experience, the airline - together with its customers - will be improving the lives of those in the communities it serves in both countries.
In its first year of operation, POP’s philanthropic-giving will be focused on two charities in the UK and two in India. Today, POP is delighted to announce who those charities will be:
Dreams Come True is a UK children's charity whose mission is to bring joy to children and young people with serious and life-limiting conditions by making their dreams come true. Over the last 27 years, the charity has fulfilled dreams for more than 5000 children and young people, as well as their friends, families and carers.
Each dream is unique. Some children want to meet their idol or favourite cartoon character while others want to visit their grandparents abroad, ride a unicorn, swim with dolphins or work on a fashion magazine. Many want help with their everyday lives and Dreams Come True can provide vital sensory equipment as well as specialist wheelchairs or adapted tricycles.
Children and young people living with serious medical conditions often have to cope with endless rounds of hospital visits, painful treatments and the prospect of living with a long-term debilitating disease. Fulfilling a dream provides a positive focus empowering both them and their families with new enthusiasm and strength to deal with the ongoing daily struggles of illness, gruelling hospital treatment and sometimes sad loss.
Peter Newman, Dreams Come True Chief Executive, commented: "Dreams Come True is delighted and excited to be chosen by POP as a charity partner. The vision and the values of POP are forward looking, progressive and socially responsible, and their success will bring benefits not just to their customers, but to many disadvantaged people in the communities they serve. We are proud to be associated with them."
SkillForce is a national education and veterans’ charity that works with schools to transform lives. Its mission is to inspire children and young people to see their uniqueness and cherish it, believe in their potential and realise it, and value opportunities and seize them.
Currently SkillForce supports children and young people aged from 5 to 19 years old in more than 200 primary and secondary schools across England, Scotland and Wales, preparing them for their next steps in education, work or training. It offers value-driven programmes to complement existing educational provision which can be tailored to meet the needs of the participating students as well as the requirements of the school.
SkillForce draws on the skills of predominantly ex-services personnel who have served their country and now wish to use their knowledge and experience to serve their community and inspire young people to succeed. HRH The Duke of Cambridge KG KT is SkillForce’s Royal Patron and has given the charity two awards in his name: the SkillForce Junior Prince’s Award and the SkillForce Prince’s Award.
Ben Slade, Chief Executive of SkillForce, said: "We are delighted with the partnership between SkillForce and POP which will help us to transform the lives of children and young people on our educational programmes by enabling them to develop resilience, self-confidence and the belief to succeed."
Railway Children is a UK-based charity that works to protect the millions of children who run away from abuse, violence and poverty and live on the streets and railways of India and around the world.
Thousands of children arrive at India's vast, chaotic railway stations and find themselves lost, alone and scared, with no idea where to go or what to do. Their dreams brutally shattered, they end up living on the platforms and the surrounding streets, making them highly vulnerable to abusers looking to prey on lonely, desperate children. Many children resort to drugs and substance abuse to get through each day.
Railway Children workers strive to meet the immediate needs of these children at risk and have created a number of 'child-friendly stations' with the help and engagement of the railway staff who work there. Outreach workers spend time with children to gain their trust and provide someone to talk to and a safe place in which to stay, while the best long-term solution for their individual circumstances is determined; where possible, children are reunited with their families.
CEO of Railway Children, Terina Keene, added: "We’re really excited about the partnership between Railway Children and POP. POP and its customers will be helping us to change the lives of vulnerable children in the communities they’re travelling to. It’s an inspirational new way of doing business and we’re delighted to be involved.”
Pratham’s mission is to improve the quality of education in India and ensure all children not only attend but also thrive in school by working in collaboration with government, local communities, parents, teachers and volunteers. Today it is the largest education charity in India, operates in 20 states and has so far helped over 36 million children.
Some 70% of students in India drop out before grade 10, and the level of girl dropouts is even higher. Pratham's flagship campaign 'Read India', launched in 2007, helps improve literacy levels in children by targeting primarily those aged between 6 and 14 years. Children are taught in groups based on their ability, not age, and a wide variety of books are now available in Pratham-aided state schools.
Girls/women (aged 16-25) participating in Pratham’s 'Second Chance' first enrol on a foundation course before spending a week at an intensive local training centre once a month. Here subject specialists run intensive lessons. A local tutor then guides each girl through homework and lessons daily to ensure an understanding of the secondary school curriculum.
The charity also runs the Pratham Institute which runs specific skill-based education courses and entrepreneurship programmes and currently 90% of Pratham Institute graduates find work after their training.
Vinati Sukhdev, Executive Director of Pratham, said: "Pratham is proud to be partnering with POP in a venture that is both visionary and revolutionary. If more businesses put people at the centre of their strategy rather than just balance sheets, we would soon be living in a more equal and sustainable world."
(Nino) Navdip Singh Judge, Chairman & Principal of POP, commented: "We at POP understand that people want wealth to be more equally distributed throughout our world, so POP is committed to giving at least 51% of its profit to charity. Research indicates that customers think companies have a duty to support the local communities in which they do business - we totally agree, which is why we will support charities local to where we fly. We want to have strong relationships with the charities we partner and will meet with them regularly to decide which projects to support as we want to create sustainable and transformative change whenever and wherever possible.”