NEW YORK - 22 July 2013 – In celebration of its title sponsorship of the Emirates Airline US Open Series and the US Open, Emirates, one of the world’s fastest growing airlines, has partnered with USTA Serves, the national charitable foundation of the United States Tennis Association (USTA), to bring the fun and fitness of tennis to children in Series markets across North America as part of the Emirates Returns program.
The Emirates Returns program is a grassroots charitable initiative connected to the Emirates Airline US Open Series, which consists of a combination of nine ATP and WTA professional, hard-court, tennis tournaments in North America during July and August, as well as the US Open. Its primary goal is to provide underserved youth in the various Series markets access to the sport of tennis as well as open up educational opportunities. To accomplish this goal, Emirates will conduct a youth tennis clinic at each of the Emirates Airline US Open Series partner tournaments and at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center on Arthur Ashe Kids’ Day for approximately 40 children.
A key component of the initiative includes a charitable donation of cash and new tennis equipment for each tournament’s affiliated charitable youth tennis partner. The total value of the donation across all nine Series tournaments and the US Open is $140,000. From that figure, Emirates will make a total cash contribution of $90,000 to USTA Serves which will then be distributed to the designated local youth tennis organizations in the form of grants to fund tennis and education programming.
Each youth tennis clinic will consist of one hour worth of beginner level tennis instruction followed by an afternoon spent watching some of the world’s best tennis professionals compete. In some instances these clinics will be accompanied by a player appearance and all kids involved will receive an Emirates gift bag.
"The Emirates Returns program is something that we, as a company, are passionate about. We feel a great responsibility to give back to the community, whether our presence felt is through our service as one of the world’s leading airlines or through our sponsorship of activities on the ground," said Hubert Frach, Emirates Divisional Senior Vice-President Commercial Operations West. "What makes this program so meaningful is that it does not just provide recreation, but Emirates Returns gives children a new outlet for learning and a passion for the sport. Tennis programs such as this also serve as a great way to bring communities together in a fun and healthful environment that benefits everyone, achieving Emirates’ goal of bringing people together and connecting them with new experiences."
"The Emirates Returns program aligns perfectly with USTA Serves’ mission to provide tennis and education programming for disadvantaged youth," said Dan Faber, Executive Director of USTA Serves. "We are grateful for Emirates’ financial support and we are excited to be a part of this great initiative."
Dates of the children’s clinics and beneficiaries of the Emirates Returns program include:
· July 24: YMCA of Metro Atlanta (Atlanta, GA)
· July 25: EPATT After-School Tennis and Tutoring (Stanford, CA)
· July 29: Washington Tennis & Education Foundation (Washington, D.C.)
· July 31: Boys and Girls Clubs & Armed Forces YMCA (Carlsbad, CA)
· August 6: Park Extension Youth Organization (Montreal, QC)
· August 7: Doug-Philpott Inner-City Fund (Toronto, ONT)
· August 16: Tennis For City Youth (Cincinnati, OH)
· August 21: Winston-Salem Young Folks Tennis (Winston-Salem, NC)
· August 22: New Haven Youth Tennis and Education (New Haven, CT)
· August 24 (Arthur Ashe Kids Day): New York Junior Tennis & Learning (Flushing, NY)
In addition to the Emirates Returns program and sponsorship of the nine Series tournaments, Emirates will have an enhanced presence at the US Open in New York City where the airline will provide attendees with on-going activations on the grounds of the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center throughout the two-week event. First, fans can experience a sampling of Emirates’ world-renowned onboard service via their A380 First-Class Suite and Business-Class Lounge inside one of the Emirates Airline activation cubes located in the South Plaza. Second, at the other Emirates Airline activation cube located in the South Plaza, Emirates will conduct an interactive game that highlights the airline’s expansive network of destinations. Fans participating in the game will be automatically entered for a chance to win a trip for two to Dubai courtesy of Emirates Airline.
Emirates’ sponsorship of the US Open launched in 2012. Emirates Airline is also the title sponsor of Emirates Team New Zealand, currently competing in the America’s Cup in San Francisco, and the airline also recently announced Founding Sponsorship of the New York Cosmos soccer team which will begin its first season since 1985 in August, 2013.
Emirates currently serves seven destination in the U.S.—San Francisco, Los Angeles, Seattle, Dallas, Houston, Washington Dulles and New York JFK. The airline has recently announced that the flagship A380 aircraft will begin serving Los Angeles on December 2nd, 2013, and on October 1st, 2013, Emirates will inaugurate a new trans-Atlantic route from New York to Milan, Italy; providing the only First Class Service between the two cities.
About Emirates: Emirates currently serves 134 cities around the globe with a young and technologically advanced fleet of 201 wide-bodied aircraft that are equipped with industry-leading comforts in the air. Additionally, Emirates has 193 wide-bodied aircraft on order, worth more than $71 billion, and is the leading customer of the Airbus A380, with 35 in its fleet and 55 on order. Renowned for its excellence in service and innovation, both on board and on the ground, Emirates holds an impressive array of prestigious awards most recently including, the ‘Best Airline Food and Wine’ by Frequent Business Traveler and the highly coveted 2013 ‘World’s Best Airline’ award presented by Skytrax. For more information visit www.emirates.com.
About USTA Serves: USTA Serves, the National Charitable Foundation of the USTA, provides financial support for disadvantaged youth and people with disabilities through tennis and education programs designed to improve health, build character, teach life skills and motivate students to strive for academic excellence. For more information on USTA Serves, visit www.usta.com/foundation.
About USTA: The USTA is the national governing body for the sport of tennis in the United States and the leader in promoting and developing the growth of tennis at every level, from local communities to the highest level of the professional game. A not-for-profit organization with more than 770,000 members, it invests 100 percent of its proceeds in growing the game. It owns and operates the US Open, the highest-attended annual sporting event in the world, and launched the Emirates Airline US Open Series, linking nine summer tournaments to the US Open. In addition, it owns approximately 90 Pro Circuit events throughout the U.S. and selects the teams for the Davis Cup, Fed Cup, Olympic and Paralympic Games. The USTA’s national charitable foundation, USTA Serves, provides grants and scholarships and helps underserved youth and people with disabilities. For more information on the USTA, log on to usta.com, "like" the official Facebook page, facebook.com/usta, or follow @usta on Twitter.