Jul 22, 2001
July 22, 2001 -- Nearly 4 million miles have been donated to Shriners Hospitals by Mileage Plus Members since the inception of the United Airlines Charity Miles Program in January 1996.
The first ticket issued through the Charity Miles Program was used to meet the urgent travel needs of Jason Pope, a patient flown from his home in Omaha, Neb., to receive treatment at the Shriners Hospital in Chicago.
Imperial Potentate John VerMaas stated "With our transportation costs approaching $10 million last year, we are very appreciative that United Airlines is providing much needed relief to our Shrine Temples in their efforts to transport patients and family members to and from our hospitals for medical care and treatment."
Over 26 million miles have been donated to charities overall as part of the "Charitable Miles" program. United Airlines Mileage Plus members are encouraged to contribute 10,000 miles or more to their favorite charity.
Shriners Hospitals was chosen as one of the recipients because John Edwardson, president of United Airlines, knew of the Shrine's philanthropic work through his father, Al Edwardson, captain of the hospital staff at Hadi Temple in Evansville, Ind. He is an active Shriner who transports patients to Shriners Hospitals as a volunteer van driver.
Nobles and their friends and families are encouraged to donated their miles to Shriners Hospitals, as these miles can be a precious gift to a child who needs transportation in order to be treated at Shriners Hospitals. To participate in the Charitable Miles program, United Mileage Plus members must have a minimum of 10,000 miles in their account before they can donate the miles to their favorite charity.
This program has been launched as a pilot program in markets serviced by United Airlines. Ballut Abyad, El Zaribah, Sesostris, Tangier and Zelzah Temples are the Temples that are currently part of the program as the need arises for patient transportation to various Shriners Hospitals. After careful evaluation of the program in these areas, there is a possibility it will be expanded to include other Temples and hospitals.
Besides Shriners Hospitals, several other charities have been chosen by United Airlines to participate in the program, including the Breast Cancer Research Foundation, the Special Olympics, the American Red Cross, the Muscular Dystrophy Association, the Make-A-Wish Foundation, the Pediatric AIDS Foundation, Children's Hospitals, Habitat for Humanity, the Salvation Army, Children's Starship Hospital (Auckland, New Zealand), Children's Wish (U.K.) and the Sick Kid's Charity (Canada).
United Airlines Mileage Plus members who would like to donate 10,000 miles or more are asked to fill out this form and send or fax it to the United Airlines/Mileage Plus Charity Department at the address listed on the form below. For further questions concerning your donation to the Charity Miles program, call United Airlines at 1-800-325-0041.
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