Brown Line and Lynden Logistics donated to the Growing Veterans Starbird Farm project in Mount Vernon, WA. The Growing Veterans organization empowers military veterans to grow food at local farms in Lynden, Mount Vernon and Seattle as a transition after military service. The Lynden donation will help provide veterans with a commercial greenhouse on their Mount Vernon farm and modify the grounds for disabled veterans. Above, Brown Line President Bill Johansen (right) presents the check to Andy Mayer, President of the Mount Vernon Chamber of Commerce.
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For more than 50 years, the World Food Programme (WFP) has been getting food to wherever it is needed in the world, saving the lives of those affected by war, civil conflict and natural disasters. Last month, the program received a boost when Lynden Air Cargo took on a three-month assignment to provide air lift of food and supplies from Assosa, Ethiopia, to Doro, South Sudan, with the potential of several other locations within Africa. Nearly 150,000 South Sudanese have sought asylum in western Ethiopia since conflict erupted in their homeland in late 2013.
“We expect between three to four flights a day, six days a week,” explains Jim Davis, Lynden Air Cargo Vice President of Marketing and Sales. “Our task is to make deliveries to ensure the South Sudanese refugees receive the food they desperately need. I would like to give credit to the Lynden employees who volunteered to do this work. This is one of the most remote places in the world and very poor living conditions. We have an amazing group of people. It is always inspiring to me how everyone rises to the challenges we face.”
The WFP is the food assistance branch of the United Nations and the world's largest humanitarian organization addressing hunger. On average, the WFP provides food to 100 million people per year in 77 of the poorest countries. This year, WFP Ethiopia plans to assist nearly 6.5 million vulnerable people with food and assistance, including school children, farmers and refugees. Up to to 350,000 refugees are expected in Gambela, Ethiopia, by the end of the year.
“We are looking forward to the challenge as this is a new market for us in a new part of the world. We have put together a great team and are excited to get started,” Jim says.
Three dogs and 26 Lynden employees participated in the American Cancer Society's Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Walk in October in Anchorage. Lynden was a 'silver' sponsor of the event - donating $1,500, and the team raised an incredible total of $7,606. Lynden was the top fundraising team at the event, which drew about 2,000 people out for a great cause. "It was a beautiful day for a walk. I know we had at least two breast cancer survivors on our team," says Jeanine St. John, Vice President of Lynden Logistics. Team captain Dani Camden of Lynden Air Cargo spearheaded the tie-dye shirts and lunches and breakfasts for fundraising. Lynden International warehouse lead Leo Lopez drew a special logo for the team.
Twenty people in two canoes left Douglas, AK this spring on their way to Wrangell for the rededication of the Chief Shakes Tribal House, a memorable and long-awaited event in the tribal community. Alaska Marine Lines donated the transportation of the canoes from Seattle to Juneau in support of the event and its organizers, the One People Canoe Society (OPCS). The historic tribal house has been undergoing renovation and a special ceremony was held May 4 to rededicate it in the village of Ka’saan on Prince of Wales Island. Canoe teams from other Southeast Alaska communities paddled to Wrangell and on to the island for the two-day celebration.
“Helping the OPCS was especially gratifying because of the scope of their reach. From Seattle to Yakutat, the group unites all communities, big and small, throughout Southeast Alaska in the cultural activity of paddling traditional canoes. Coordinating this shipment also highlighted the importance of our Alaska Marine Lines service within the various communities in Alaska,” says Jake Maenpa, Alaska Marine Trucking Juneau Service Center Manager.
In keeping with Lynden’s commitment to give back to the communities where it does business, Lynden Air Cargo (PNG) Ltd., is providing assistance and support to a center for disabled children and orphans in Tari, Papua New Guinea. “We donated a computer to the Tari Disable Care Centre and plan to provide more support to this organization and others in the future,” says Greg Vaughan, Lynden Air Cargo (PNG) President.
In addition to this initial donation, Greg says Lynden will explore ways to provide support in logistics, equipment and even staff to the school in Tari “so that these less fortunate children are given equal opportunities and skills in their lives.”
Lynden also sponsored students from Tari this year at several educational training institutions in the country. Six students receive full tuition, accommodations and living allowances at the Institute of Business Studies (IBS) in Port Moresby while another student is being sponsored for training as an airport safety officer.
Lynden Air Cargo has been operating in Papua New Guinea for the past two years. The local community has already benefited from Lynden’s presence with spin-off economic and business opportunities and activities.
Lynden moves cargo from Nadzab Airport in Lae to Tari in the PNG Highlands. Air delivery is necessary due to the deteriorating condition of the Highlands Highway, mountainous terrain and to speed projects along. Lynden Air Cargo uses three of its Lockheed L-382 Hercules freighters to fly in machinery, equipment, parts, supplies, containers and other materials. Lynden has an office and maintenance base at Nadzab Airport and supports mining and petroleum projects in Papua New Guinea.
According to Greg, the Tari centre is located about a mile from the airport and Lynden’s office. “It consists of two grass huts with dirt floors that were built by the volunteer teachers,” he says. “The children and several teachers were there when I presented the computer,” he says. “I took these pictures that day. They were very appreciative.”
It’s become an annual tradition at Alaska Marine Lines’ warehouses in Seattle and Southeast Alaska: Thousands of cases of Girl Scout cookies arrive on pallets each spring ready to be sorted for distribution to local troops. Alaska Marine Lines has donated warehouse space, forklifts and volunteers to the organization for many years. In Alaska, the cookies are shipped to Ketchikan where they are unloaded in the warehouse and reorganized for distribution to 10 other locations. Each community receives palletized cookies, then coordinates with local troops for final distribution. In Seattle, 3,435 cases – that’s 41,220 boxes – of Thin Mints, Trefoils and other cookies were sorted in just three hours. Alaska Marine Lines Warehouse Manager Brett Beck gets up early on a Saturday morning to help each year. “I finish around noon,” he says, “and I usually get some free cookies out of the deal. But I always buy some too,” he is quick to add. “We appreciate Alaska Marine Lines letting us use their warehouse for the seventh year,” says Cheryl Brown, Girl Scouts Cookie Manager in West Seattle.
Above, minivans lined up for cookies at the Seattle warehouse.
To honor Lynden’s many employee veterans, Lynden Logistics Vice President Jeanine St. John and Brian Potvin, Central Alaska Manager for Alaska Marine Lines, presented a check to Anchorage Mayor Dan Sullivan in December to help restore the Anchorage Veterans’ Memorial at Delaney Park. Lynden’s contribution put the fundraising over the $1 million mark. Approximately $1.45 million is needed to complete the project. The Anchorage Veterans’ Memorial Committee was appointed last year by Mayor Sullivan and directed to engage the public, raise funds for restoration and complete the project with the local Parks & Recreation Department and Anchorage Park Foundation.
“Lynden’s commitment to the veterans in our community is admirable and appreciated. Because of their generosity, Anchorage is one step closer to providing a much-needed upgrade to the Veterans Memorial on the Park Strip,” says Mayor Sullivan. “It’s gratifying when companies like Lynden step up and deliver for their community.”
The 24-year-old memorial is in need of major renovation, including creating access for the disabled, vandal-proofing, concrete work and lighting. “Lynden’s support of the restoration project is a way to pay tribute to all veterans and their families – those who are part of the Lynden family, those we have lost, those who served and those who now serve,” Jeanine explains.
Left to Right: Fred "Bulldog" Becker of the Anchorage Veteran's Memorial Committee, Brian Potvin of Alaska Marine Lines- Veteran/US Marine Corp., Anchorage Mayor Dan Sullivan, Tim Benintendi, Anchorage Veteran's Memorial Chairman, Jeanine St. John of Lynden Logistics, Ross St. John of Alaska West Express-Veteran/US Marine Corp.