Our main focus is on programs that support disadvantaged children, young people and their families. By supporting such programs, but also cultural and sports events as well as charitable organizations that help victims of natural disasters, we want to use our possibilities and bring some joy and relief into the world of the people concerned. 

“one” water – providing clean, safe water to African communities

World Duty Free has worked together with The One Foundation since 2006. This charity created the bottled water brand “One Water” in 2005 to help people who do not have access to clean drinking water. Profits generated from the sale of this water are donated by the foundation to the construction of water infrastructure to provide Sub-Saharan African regions with drinking water. Over the last decade, the foundation invested over £ 14 million in water and sanitation projects, helping over 3 million of the world’s poorest people. Their 2016 - 2020 strategy mainly focuses on four countries – Rwanda, Kenya, Malawi and Ghana – and Dufry is proud to reach out with a helping hand.

Imagine children who have to get up at 3 am every day and collect water for 5 hours before going to school, then after school having to do the same for another 3 hours: A new water pump nearby – financed through the foundation – enables them to collect water easily nowadays. Water and sanitation projects like this are changing lives! WDF sells the “one” brand water bottles, juiced water and reusable jute bags in its UK stores and has thereby helped to raise significant funds for the One foundation.

The One Foundation Drinking water project
“one” water projects | Nankumba Zone & Madziabango Zone, Blantyrie District | Malawi Supporting Sub-Saharan African communities through The One Foundation drinking water projects.

SOS Children’s Villages – supporting communities in Brazil, Mexico and Russia

Dufry started its long-term partnership with the SOS Children’s Villages organization back in 2009. The first project sponsored at that time was a social center in Igarassu, Brazil, for which Dufry funded the construction costs of the center and has been supporting the center’s running costs and training classes ever since. With the Dufry support 460 infants, young children and teenagers with their mothers in 51 families benefitted from family strengthening programs with child-minding and day care centers in 2016. Furthermore, an additional donation allowed the financing of the yearly family-budgets, medical costs and school fees for 15 children and their SOS-mothers.

Reaching out with a helping hand to disadvantaged children and their families.

Another SOS Children’s Villages social center program that Dufry has been supporting since 2013 is located in Tehuacan, Mexico. This project enables mothers to leave their children in the safety of the SOS child care center during the day so that they can go to work and earn their own income. Our contribution in 2016 supported the running costs – food, medical assistance as well as school and educational staff expenses – of the social center with 500 beneficiaries in 140 families.

A third project, started in 2015, supports the SOS Children’s Village in Lavrovo, Russia. When young people are ready to move out of the SOS families, they join the SOS Youth Program, which gives them a start into vocational training or supports them on their way to a higher education. Dufry’s funding in 2016 supported twelve adolescents on their personal way to shape their own future. 


Family strenghthening – SOS children's village
Lavrovo | Russia – A SOS Children’s Villages project supported by Dufry since 2015.

Since 2013, Dufry also runs an additional financing channel in favor of the worldwide work of SOS Children’s Villages: we have installed special coin collection boxes in many of our shops all over the world. This creates an opportunity for our customers and our business partners to actively participate in the support programs of this child-caring organization.

Hand in Hand for Haiti

Dufry became a sponsor in the Student Sponsorship Program launched by the Hand in Hand for Haiti Foundation and supported in 2016 a group of 25 students at the school complex in Saint Marc, north of Port-au-Prince. Through our donation the sponsored students can receive free trilingual education in French, English and Creole. Furthermore, it also provides them with meals, health services, uniforms and school supplies as well as bus transportation to and from school. 

Hand in hand for Haiti
Saint Marc | Haiti - Participating in a student sponsorship program by the Hand in Hand for Haiti Foundation.

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil – support of a social promotion program for 21 years

Dufry Brazil has been sponsoring a social promotion program in Rio de Janeiro for the last 21 years. This program offers free professional education to 30 young people every year. Classes can be attended by 16 to 20 year-old female or male teenagers. The program covers subjects like English, computer classes, retail operations, professional orientation, teamwork, leadership, ethics and citizenship modules. The students attending also receive free meals, medical and dental care, life insurance, uniforms, school and educational material and transportation assistance. After that, Dufry facilitates their job career indicating them to internal opportunities and external partners.

Dufry employees regularly participate in the program as volunteers, serving also as mentors to these teenagers.

Dufry supports United Nation’s Global Goals campaign #YouNeedToKnow

In November 2016, the United Nations in Geneva, the Geneva International Airport and Dufry’s duty-free shop at the Geneva airport have joined forces in a campaign called #YouNeedToKnow to remind travelers that there won’t be a second chance to save the planet for future generations. Travelers arriving at the Geneva airport in November 2016 were greeted by a wall-size promotion of the UN global goals, and an appeal to do their part to help achieve these goals by 2030. The advertisement was installed just outside of Dufry’s duty-free shop. 

Dufry’s support for the Global Goals campaign has also been extended to London’s Heathrow airport, where the campaign has been promoted across the digital signage displays of the World Duty Free stores in all the airport terminals. Dufry is currently in discussions with the United Nations on how to further collaborate in other projects in the upcoming years.

United Nations joined forces
United Nations | UK, Switzerland – Dufry joined forces with UNITED NATIONS in an information campaign at Heathrow airport in London and at the Geneva airport in 2016.

World Duty Free funds The Dementia Research Infoline

Dementia is not a disease in itself, it is a definition used to describe a group of symptoms that occur when brain cells stop working properly and die off. Because of the high impact these symptoms have in everyone’s life, it is of great importance to get people informed about dementia. This is what Alzheimer’s Research UK does – and from now on with the support of Dufry. 

By fundraising The Dementia Research Infoline, World Duty Free staff will help Alzheimer’s Research UK to provide more people with information about dementia; how they can get help and what’s being done to cure it. The funds will also help the organization to sign up more volunteers to take part in medical research.

Manchester HOME project

HOME is Manchester’s newest cultural organization founded by the merger of two of the city’s long-standing arts venues – Cornerhouse (established in 1985) and the Library Theatre Company (founded 1952), which has been supported by World Duty Free ever since 2003 in form of a community partnership for the Wythenshawe area in the South of Manchester. To date the engagement has reached over 2,000 participants attending drama workshops, theatre visits, joining intergenerational projects as well as adult creative writing courses.

In 2016, WDF has funded two initiatives; the Wythenshawe Community Workshop and the Wythenshawe School project, both providing opportunities to young people and pupils to expand their horizons, build new skills, increase their confidence and ultimately give them the tools to help maximize their potential and prepare them for future training and employment.

Hudson supports Communities in Schools and keeps U.S. troops connected

In Division 5, Hudson Group has continued its long-term partnership with Communities in Schools (CIS), the largest and leading dropout prevention group in the United States. CIS and its nearly 200 local affiliates in 25 states and the District of Columbia surround students – nearly 1.5 million nationwide with a community of support to help them get the education they need and keep them in school. 91 % of the students they work with on a one-to-one basis remain in school. Funds are collected in Hudson and Hudson News stores in airports, bus and rail terminals within counter-top boxes at registers.

Hudson Group also partners with local charities in the areas where it does business to provide support and engagement in the community, including the USO (United Service Organizations). Through the local connections we have with USO chapters across the U.S., Hudson Group and its customers have helped keep America’s military service members connected to family and friends throughout their service with the “donate a phone call” initiative.

Hudson Group reached a record milestone in 2016 in customer donations of phone cards to the military, sold at Hudson Booksellers, Hudson News, and Hudson airport store locations. The pre-activated AT&T cards allow troops to access the Internet and call home to their families and friends. The phone cards work from landlines and payphones across the globe, including war zone locations.

Further donations and cultural events

Dufry is supporting many other social projects with local activities in countries where it operates. Examples for such projects during 2016 are: In Australia, Dufry is a supporter of the Diamond Dinner for the Children’s Cancer Institute. This fund raising event brought together over 250 high-net worth individuals, celebrities and industry leaders who support the work of this institute that is wholly dedicated to childhood cancer. In Korea, we support through different donations local students for high school scholarship and English teaching classes for low-income children as well as Korean teaching to multicultural families. 

The operations in Greece supported the Hellenic Red Cross refugees program and implemented a fund raising activity for supporting the Special Olympics Hellas, the largest sports and educational organization for people with intellectual disabilities in Greece. Furthermore, the Greece operations participated in Delta Airlines Day of Hope in Athens to benefit the American Cancer Society and sponsored various local community events organized by municipalities, embassies and local authorities. 

In Spain, we contributed to Fundación Aladina, an organization that helps more than 1,700 children at many hospitals around Spain year after year. The 2016 contribution was used to subsidize the refurbishment of the Intensive Care Unit at the Child Hospital Niño Jesús in Madrid. And we were giving the hospital’s campaign further visibility in the Madrid-Barajas airport through contentainment screens and charity boxes in December and January. 

Our sponsorship of cultural events also continued during 2016, including many local community events for example Swiss Indoors tennis tournament in Basel or the Baloîse Session, a three week music festival in Switzerland. In the year under review, Dufry also supported the Zoofäscht, the bi-annual fund-raising gala to support the Zurich zoo.

The broad network of our travel retail shops in all continents gives us another opportunity to support social programs: In many of our shops we maintain donation boxes, thereby encouraging customers to participate in support activities for specific or local programs or for victims of natural disasters. The amounts that can be collected this way are astonishing and we thank all our participating customers for their generosity. The various charities that received the donations have welcomed them greatly.

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