Update: The Passports with Purpose fundraiser for 2012 has ended, and I’m excited to report that the $100,000 goal was met. Congratulations to all the prize winners. If you’re still interested in donating for the PWP beneficiary of 2012 Water.org you can do so by clicking here. Thanks for your support
I often half-jokingly talk about being poor, because I can’t afford a few hundred dollars (or more) to travel right now. Truth is I’m not that poor. I certainly can’t say that as I’m typing this post on a Macbook, in a heated home, while drinking a glass of clean tap water. As a traveler, even an infrequent one, I’m certainly lucky and grateful for the opportunities I’ve had.
A few years ago a group of travel bloggers decided to repay the gratitude they felt for their travels by giving back. In 2008 they organized Passports with Purpose and set out to fundraise $2500 for Heifer International. In the end they raised $7400. Every year since then Passports with Purpose has a fundraiser each year to support a different charity. This year the Passports with Purpose is aiming to fundraise $100,000 for Water.org to build a series of 5 wells in two communities in Haiti. According to Water.org Haiti has a population of 9 million people, 4 million of which don’t have access to clean drinking water, and 7 million don’t have access to sanitation services.
Video from Expedia and PWP about last year’s fundraising project for Room to Read in Namimbia. They showed this video at a TBEX party in Keystone, Colorado and yep I teared up.
I’ve been happy to donate to Passports with Purpose for the past few years. Every year travel bloggers sign up to work with PWP, and various companies to host prizes that people can win for making a donation to the Passports with Purpose campaign. For every $10 donation you make you can opt into a draw to win a travel prize that a blogger is hosting. Donations are made through Paypal, so it’s easy and safe to make a donation. They’re tax deductible, and aside from the Paypal fees, all the money raised will go to Water.org the PWP charity for 2012. The prize draw is available until December 11th at 11:5pm EST.
This year I’m participating as a blogger and hosting a prize with iFly Seattle. They’re giving one lucky reader of Traveler Ahoy a gift certificate for a family pass, good for up to five people, to their indoor skydiving facility. The prize includes up to ten flights in the wind tunnel, and a DVD of the experience. The total value of the prize being $249.95 before tax. This prize is available to anyone over the age of 18, and there’s no expiration date for the prize.
As a kid I used to watch Peter Pan and think happy thoughts hoping one day Tinkerbell would come by, sprinkle some fairy dust, and I’d be able to fly. Skydiving sounds like fun, but the thought of jumping out of plane also sounds scary and dangerous. Here you get to experience the feeling of skydiving without worrying about whether or not your parachute will open, and something tragic could happen. You’re in a wind tunnel indoors. It’s safe, and almost anyone over the age of 3 can participate (information about the physical requirements for iFly Seattle can be found here). iFly Seattle has even trained professional skydiving teams, so you can train to fly for actual skydiving if you wanted. Honestly if I could enter this contest I would, but it’s against the rules for bloggers or their immediate family (apologies to my mom, dad and brother) to enter for the prize they’re hosting.
Commercial for iFly Seattle. I’m already jealous of the winner.
I love Seattle. It’s the city where I got my first international (yes I count the US as international) travel experience outside of a family vacation. It’s where I had my first epic road trip, outside of Canada. Seattle is a fantastic city, and I’m happy to host this really cool prize and give someone some incentive to visit Seattle (if any incentive is needed), and the opportunity to fly. Of course you don’t have to be planning a trip to Seattle right away. There is no expiration date for the prize if you win, so you can use it whenever you wish – you just need to make a reservation in advance. If you’re not into skydiving, even in a safe indoor environment, you can still make a donation to the 2012 Passports with Purpose Campaign and opt to enter a draw for another prize. There’s no limit to the amount of donations you can make, so you can enter to win as many prizes as you want.
Making a change in the world has to start somewhere, and it can start with you. Each year Passports with Purpose has exceeded their goal because of the generosity of its supporters. $10 for me, is something I can afford to part with, even on my student income (read: making almost no money/year). I’m sure for most of you you could easily part with $10 to make a real change in the lives of many people in Haiti. Even if you can’t afford to donate $10, any amount donated is always appreciated.
How to Donate
To make a donation to the 2012 Passports with Purpose fundraiser please click here, and fill out the required fields. Winners will be notified via email by December 18, so be sure to include a valid email address so we can contact you in case you are a winner. Like all valid contests a purchase doesn’t increase your chance of winning, but I do think it would be in pretty poor form to try to win a prize without making a donation for such a great cause. More information about the official contest rules can be found here. The fundraiser runs from November 27 at 11:59pm EST to December 11 at 11:50pm EST. Donations can continue to be made after December 11, but the draw for the prizes will be closed after that date.
I’d like to thank iFly Seattle for donating this prize. I have not used the services of IFly Seattle…yet, but all opinions within this post are my own.