British Airways has raised an incredible £27.3 million for Flying Start, through the airline’s global charity partnership with Comic Relief. The money has been raised over the past 13 years, since the partnership’s launch in 2010.
To celebrate this ‘oarsome’ milestone, British Airways teamed up with Comic Relief celebrity supporters Alison Hammond, Rylan and Sir Steve Redgrave to find out if one of its aircraft could beat the GB Rowing team in a race next to London City Airport.
Never one to shy away from a challenge, rowing legend Sir Steve Redgrave brought together medal-winning members of the GB Rowing Team to take on the challenge.
The World Champions and Olympians in the mixed eight boat comprised a cox, four female and four male rowers, who took on a British Airways Cityflyer Embraer 190 Aircraft.
The race took place at London City Airport, next to the Royal Albert Docks with the runway running parallel to the water where many Olympic and World Champion rowers train.
Sir Steve Redgrave, an honorary trustee of Comic Relief and five-time Olympic gold medal rowing champion, said,
As a trustee for Comic Relief, it’s so fantastic to combine my passion for rowing with a cause so close to my heart. I trained at these docks for many years, so I know them well, but seeing a challenge like this was certainly a first for me. It was a lot of fun and a privilege to be a part of – I’m so pleased to have had the opportunity to help raise awareness for British Airways’ Flying Start charity partnership, that has helped millions of individuals worldwide with its fundraising.
Mary Brew, British Airways Community Investment Manager said,
We’re so proud to have reached the 13th year of our long-standing partnership with Comic Relief. It’s the generous donations of our customers and the fundraising efforts of our colleagues that has helped us reach another milestone this Red Nose Day.
Funds raised through the Flying Start partnership support projects both in the UK and around the world in destinations that British Airways flies to. Examples include Spina Bifida Hydrocephalus Scotland which provides tailored support to families with children affected by spina bifida and /or hydrocephalus, and Butterflies in New Delhi, which works with children living or working on the streets to give them life skills to prosper. Butterflies has supported an estimated 2,250 children in New Delhi over the last two years.
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