Our Roots in the Community
Our Roots in the Community
Icelandair Group has for 70 years had an extensive influence on Icelandic history and through its operation the company has played a key role in shaping modern Iceland. With a network providing Icelanders with direct regular flights to over 20 major cities in Europe and North-America, Icelandair Group has been responsible for providing this small island nation with transport services and communication opportunities that are second to none, and at the same time the company has built up tourism as an important sector of the Icelandic economy.
The transportation of passengers and freight creates value for individuals and for society at large. Icelandair Group contributes to a long-term high standard of living and quality of life for its employees. It aims to provide a physically and mentally favourable working environment and opportunities for all its employees to develop as professionals and as human beings. By its existence and activities, the Group also contributes to economic and social welfare in the countries and societies where it operates.
The various companies within Icelandair Group also support a wide variety of community activities throughout the year. They are among the main sponsors of various public events, as well as directly supporting the activities of numerous organisations. Icelandair, the Group’s largest subsidiary, is a major supporter of countless worthy causes. The following is a brief list of some of its principal beneficiaries.
Special Children Travel Fund
The main objective of this fund is to help children suffering from long-term illness or other adverse circumstances to see something of the world. The fund is supported both directly by Icelandair and through the generous donations of its customers. Each year, the Icelandair Special Children Travel Fund enables about 50 children and their families, from all over the world, to go on their „dream journey“. Vigdis Finnbogadottir, former President of Iceland, is the patron of the fund. Detailed information is available on www.vildarborn.is
Icelandic Musical Talent
Icelandair is proud of its support for Icelandic musical talent, support that takes talent by the hand right from the start, from the time of the first performance at Musiktilraunir (Musical Experiments), an Icelandic musical competition which provides an opportunity for “garage bands” to step into the limelight and perform their music – the winners are rewarded by Icelandair with a performance spot at the annual music festival Iceland Airwaves. Icelandair is the founder and main sponsor of Iceland Airwaves (or Icelandair Waves!), a music event that started in 1999 as a showcase of Icelandic music talent for foreign record company executives. Since then, Iceland Airwaves has grown and blossomed and is now an integral part of the cultural life in Reykjavik with over 150 artists performing in various Reykjavik downtown locations. The fruits of the festival’s labour have been ripening and today many Icelandic artists have made their way into the international music scene. For this reason, the logical next step was the formation of the fund Reykjavik Loftbrú (Reykjavik Airbridge) which Icelandair, along with the city of Reykjavik and the Association of Icelandic Musicians, initiated. The fund enables Icelandic musical talent to travel abroad to perform, promote and market their music outside Iceland.
Icelandair is also one of the main sponsors of the annual Icelandic Music Awards (Íslensku Tónlistarverðlaunin) thereby closing the circle in supporting Icelandic Musical talent from the garage level to the highest eschelons.
Icelandair is proud of its support for various cultural events, and is a pioneer in this field. The first sponsorship agreement, signed in Iceland back in 1972, was when Icelandair became the main sponsor of The Reykjavik Arts Festival, which has been held biannually since 1970 and annually since 2004. The Festival is one of the oldest and most respected arts festivals in Northern Europe with the purpose of promoting Icelandic and international culture in all fields of art. With food-related travel as an ever growing market segment, Icelandair established in 2001 the Food & Fun festival, an event which combines outstanding culinary skills, fresh natural ingredients, Icelandic outdoor adventure and the world-famous Reykjavik nightlife to create the ultimate recipe for fun. The core element of the festival involves world-acclaimed chefs collaborating with Reykjavik‘s best restaurants. Each chef is assigned to one of the participating restaurants, where they prepare a special menu made exclusively out of Icelandic ingredients. The menu is offered at all the restaurants for an entire week. In addition, the chefs themselves are on site for three nights during the festival week. Icelandair is the founder and owner of the Food and Fun event.
Icelandic theatrical talent is growing in popularity outside Iceland and Icelandair has provided support by partnering with The National Theatre of Iceland to enable it to promote Icelandic theatre abroad. In addition, the fund Talia Airbridge was established for Icelandic actors, directors and writers. The aim of the fund is to support participants in the theatrical arts to perform and market themselves abroad. Icelandair, in co-operation with the city of Reykjavik, the Actors’ Association and Glitnir Bank, is a sponsor of this fund.
Icelandair prides itself in supporting many of the Icelandic national sports teams, as they travel abroad and symbolise Iceland wherever they go. The Football Association of Iceland (KSÍ) was established in 1947, and Icelandair has been its faithful sponsor for a long time, a fact bought home in Icelandair’s latest advertising campaign. The Icelandic Handball Federation (HS Í) is another sports association whose athletes have travelled the world, proudly bearing the Icelandic flag on their hearts and the Icelandair logo on their chests. With the aim of attracting more and more runners each year, Icelandair has from the beginning been one of the main sponsors of the Reykjavik Marathon, which is held on the third weekend in August every year and has been running for more than 20 years. Icelandair is the main sponsor of the Icelandair Open Bridge Tournament, which is an annual event, held each February. The tournament has been staged for a quarter of a century and has attracted some of the best bridge players in the world, many of whom have returned again and again. Icelandic horses are unique animals, and as such they have their own event, the Icelandair Horse Festival. Landsmót is the Icelandic name of this biannual National Horse Show of Iceland, a unique and unforgettable occasion - the biggest event involving Icelandic horses in the world. At the Landsmót people come from all over the world to see the best horses in Iceland performing in various different types of equestrian competitions.