The cruise and exploration travel operator’s foundation supports a variety of projects in places where it sends its passengers.
Cruise Industry News reports that a charitable foundation set up by the ferry and cruise line Hurtigruten gave funds in 2018 to various projects, including those working to preserve the shores of South Georgia, recycle plastic in the Philippines, conserve the polar bear population and rescue dogs and grow fresh vegetables in the high Arctic.
Hurtigruten says that for years their passengers have contributed to the local communities and areas where it operates.
“We established Hurtigruten Foundation to ensure that our guests of tomorrow can enjoy the same unique experiences as our guests of today. Working closely with guests, partners and organizations, we believe we can make a difference—by minimizing our operational impact and maximizing the positive contribution we make to local communities,” explains Hurtigruten CEO Daniel Skjeldam.
Hurtigruten grants funds to projects, communities and organizations focused around three main pillars. First, conserving the world’s polar bear population, secondly the fight against marine and plastic pollution.
And third, financially supporting global and local projects at the over 200 destinations in more than 30 countries its ships and guests explore.
Polar bear research by the Norwegian Polar Institute in the Arctic has been ongoing since the 1960s and is crucial for understanding and preserving the bear population, according to Hurtigruten.
The company also notes that one third of all children on Greenland grow up in families with social issues, and many finish school without a proper foundation for further education. The NGO Foreningen Grønlandske Børn wants to change this.
Polar Permaculture in Svalbard, meanwhile, produces farm fresh vegetables, microgreens, sprouts and quail eggs for the local community with a sustainable, circular system. Plans call for producing enough food for the entire town of Longyearbyen and processing all of the community’s organic and biological waste.
Norwegian Rescue Dogs is a volunteer organization, and the dogs in the Svalbard branch are a vital part of the local rescue force. The Hurtigruten Foundation grant says it will secure avalanche training and equipment for dogs and handlers.