4 Champions for Children

What is Change for Good?

Change for Good is an innovative partnership between UNICEF and the international airline industry. Established in 1987, it is one of UNICEF's best-known and longest-running partnerships. Currently 10 international airlines support the Change for Good program. Thanks to the generous support of customers and participating airlines, the global Change for Good program has generated more than $156 million that UNICEF has used to provide a healthier, happier future for millions of children.

American Airlines has been participating in UNICEF’s Change for Good program in the United States since 1994 and is the sole U.S. airline partner. Travelers on selected international American Airlines flights can donate unused U.S. and foreign currencies onboard the aircraft to help UNICEF in its mission to fight for the survival and development of all children, in all situations, all of the time. 

What are Champions for Children?

Through UNICEF's Change for Good program, American Airlines Flight Attendants can volunteer as “Champions for Children,” collecting donations from American's customers on all international flights to and from the U.S. (including Canada, Mexico, and the Caribbean (SJU, USVI) - plus Hawaii) to help UNICEF save and improve children's lives, all while at work.

How do I register to become a Champion for Children? Or how do I recruit a fellow flight attendant to register?

To register: go to www.newjetnet.aa.com and select "Flight Service, Helpful Links, Champions for Children".  Select "Register Now" and fill out the form.

We highly appreciate you spreading the word to encourage your colleagues to become Champions for Children. You can use this recruitment video to inspire them to participate and then direct them to jetnet.aa.com to register. Other employee groups may also register to be Champions and participate in special projects on the ground as announced.

How can I update my email address?

Please email championsforchildren@aa.com with your new email address and we will update our directory system. If you haven't heard from us in a while, then we have an old or incorrect email address for you. Please send us your new email address at championsforchildren@aa.com. We take this opportunity to encourage you to activate your new aa.com email address. For more information click here.

Where can I get more information on how to participate as a Champion for Children in UNICEF's Change for Good program on American Airlines?

Find our Champions for Children page at newjetnet.aa.com/ Flight Service/ Helpful Links/ Champions for Children or search "UNICEF" on jetnet main page.

Can I collect donations inflight if I am not a registered Champion for Children?

We ask that you do not collect donations in-flight if you’re not registered, but it is very quick and easy to register! Go to newjetnet.aa.com/ Flight Service/ Helpful Links/ Champions for Children. Select "Register Now" and fill out the form. Be sure to include your email address to receive important periodic updates and the opportunity to participate in annual voting as well as contests for future field visits and other UNICEF USA special events, such as the Snowflake Ball and Masquerade Ball. Then you can start collecting on international flights – including to and from Canada, Mexico, and the Caribbean -- in Change for Good collection bags.

Where can I find an updated Change for Good PA (including English and foreign languages)?

The Change for Good PA is available in English and 14 destination languages in your flight attendant tablet in the "PA Card" app or "Comply 365/My Publications/Inflight Manual/PA's." You can also go to the “Resources and FAQs” section on the Champions for Children microsite where you will find PAs under “PA Cards." Click here to go to the PA Cards section. 

Where can I find the Change for Good PA in foreign languages?

Champions have told us that their collections are more successful when they read the Change for Good PA in the customer’s native language. Foreign language PA’s are available for foreign language speakers to use – even if they’re not Champions themselves. This could be a good way to recruit them to officially join the program! Visit the Champions for Children microsite download center in the “Resources and FAQs" section. Click here to go to the "PA Cards" section and you will find foreign language PAs. PA cards are also available on the Flight Service website. Click on “Manuals and Guides,” “PA Cards,” and “UNICEF Translations.”

How do I play the UNICEF video in-flight?

The “UNICEF COLLECTION VIDEO” is a brief video on the Change for Good program and includes highlights of Champions’ visit to UNICEF programs in the field. Champions are asked to introduce the video at the end of your PA. The video plays over the PA and the main OH monitors on all flights with vide-equipped aircraft. For non-video equipped aircrafts, see special "Change for Good PA located in flight attendant tablet/ Document Library/ UNICEF.

  • 767/757/737 IFE System - on the IFE screen, select the “Video PA” button. Scroll down the menu, select “UNICEF COLLECTION VIDEO”.  Select language (English) and press “PLAY”.  Make sure the OH monitors are turned on in all cabins.
  • 777-200/300 – on the IFE screen, push the “Video Announcements” button. Select the “Overhead” button. Scroll down the title menu, select UNICEF Collection Video and press play."

What if I can't show the CFG video because the aircraft has no video capability (or video not working)?

For non-video equppied aircrafts with no overhead monitor to show the CFG video, Champions read the special Change for Good PA specifically designed for non-video aircrafts. You can find this PA by going to the flight attendant tablet / Document Library/ UNICEF.  

Do I need the permission of the Purser to show the Change for Good video and collect donations? 

No. Champions do not need the permission of the Purser to show the video or to collect. Simply inform let the Purser/Lead that you are a registered Champion and plan to collect Change for Good in-flight. As a courtesy, you may coordinate collection time with the Purser/Lead flight attendant. 

What do I do if the Purser on my flight tells me I cannot collect for Change for Good because he or she personally does not support the program or does not approve of collections on morning arrivals?

If a Purser tries to prevent a Champion from collecting for Change for Good on a flight, the Champion should kindly inform him/her that it is not the Purser’s decision whether or not a Champion can collect for Change for Good and that they have the right to make the Change for Good collection. However, if a Purser asks a Champion on an early morning arrival to not make the Change for Good PA in the First Class cabin (aircraft with separate PA systems for each cabin), then it is advised that the Champion comply with this request. On aircraft with only one PA system for all cabins, a Champion may remind the Purser that on early morning arrivals, most passengers are awake 30 minutes prior to landing once the Captain or Purser has made their PA. If a Purser continues to challenge a Champion, the Champion should contact Professional Standards or email championsforchildren@aa.com .  They can also ask the Purser to contact championsforchildren@aa.com if they have any questions (we will adhere to anonymity, as requested).

Where can I pick up a Change for Good collection bag?

Registered Champions can pick up collection bags at the Crew Service Center. 

What do I mark on the Change for Good collection bag before I turn it in?

Champions should be using the latest version of Change for Good collection bags. It is important to mark your base on the back of the collection bag before dropping it in at the safe at your base. Also, all Champions must follow the required Buddy Witness System procedure (see below for description). 

What is the Buddy Witness System?

A Buddy Witness is another individual (i.e. Champion, Flight Attendant, other crew member) who will serve as a witness following a Champion completing a collection process and sealing the pouch. As a reminder, Champions must seal the collection bag immediately following their CFG collection. Champion and Buddy Witness both sign the back of the bag on designated signature lines. On a return flight after a layover (overnight), Champion must show their original Buddy Witness the same, sealed, signed bag from the outbound flight. Champion must offer to the crew the opportunity to accompany them to the UNICEF safe (if interested). This procedure is in place to ensure the integrity of the program and to protect Champions. For detailed instructions, go to "Document Library/UNICEF/Buddy Witness System" in the flight attendant tablet.

How do I deposit Change for Good collections?

Please deposit the collection bag in the UNICEF safe at base. Remember to mark your base before sealing and depositing.

When you deposit your collections, please follow the required Buddy Witness System procedure. Ask a fellow Champion, the Purser, or other flight attendant to witness your deposit.  It's as easy as that.  It makes sense that if it is known that this is expected procedure, then there is no reason for someone to not follow it. When depositing in the safe outside customs, please ask the person behind you to just watch you quickly deposit the collections in the safe. It only takes a few moments.

Where are the Change for Good safes located?

Thank you to all Champions who are using the safes to help collect funds for Change for Good on international flights. Below is a current list of safe locations which can also be found in the flight attendant tablet by visiting Document Library/UNICEF/Safe Locations.

BOS: 1 safe - Upstairs by the liquor deposit safe and behind AA ATO ATAC / cash out room

CLT: 2 safes - (1) Just outside the Customs Hall exit, to the right at the end of the re-check counter. (2) Station Accounting office on the main ticketing level to the right of the short hallway leading to Known Crew Member (KCM) checkpoint (right off public restrooms, ring door-bell with red dot for quick access. Hours open: 05:30-17:30).

DFW: 3 safes – (1) Terminal A Flight Service Operations by elevator; (2) by the elevator in Terminal D (gate level); (3) behind ticket counter #37 to the left of the security line (gate level) outside of security.

LAX: 2 safes - (1) Apron level at the employee bus port. After clearing customs, flight attendants going to the employee parking lot will take the elevator down to the first floor, Apron level. As the doors open, the safe is located to the right of the elevator doors. (2) Flight Service Operations area. Passing Known Crew Member, at the top of the escalator to Tom Bradley walkway - safe is inside the door of operations in the Purser room.

MIA: 2 safes - (1) Flight Service Operations. (2) in CSM hallway to the right of D3 checkpoint. (To open door, use jet bridge key or same code for door to Flight Service Operations).

NYC (JFK): 2 safes – (1) Exit customs through door at right (disregard straps). Safe is in small room immediately to right past exit (if barrier, walk around it). Door label states: "Not An Exit." (2) Small room at left upon entering JFK Flight Service. Both rooms are opened with a jet-bridge key.

ORD: 3 safes - (1) Terminal 3 H3 Ops. (2) Terminal 3 K19 Ops. (3) T5 - Exit customs and go to recheck desk; Enter doorway to left of the desk. Go down hallway, take 2 rights and safe is located in agent break room (takes less than 5 minutes.)

PHL: 2 safes - (1) Exit customs. Safe is located to the right, next to the ticket counter. (2) Located across from the vending machines in the crew room at A-West (across from A17). Call (610) 362-1700 for door code.

PHX: 1 safe - Exit customs, take the escalator to Ticketing (not Baggage Claim), proceed to the American Airlines Self Service Check In area by door 25. The safe is just inside the door behind this area; use the PHX door code to access it.

RDU: Deposit collections with Purser in liquor carts onboard and secure lock seals.

Although the preferred method would be to accept cash, if a passenger would like to give a check, you may accept and place it with the rest of the donations in the collection bag.  Only U.S. checks are accepted and they must be made out to the "UNICEF USA".

Click here for detailed instructions on depositing sealed Change for Good collection bags in safes. 

Are travelers’ donations tax-deductible?

As all cash donations are processed in bulk, UNICEF USA is unable to provide passengers with tax-deductible acknowledgements. However, if a passenger donates via U.S. check, UNICEF USA will mail him or her a tax-deductible acknowledgement letter.

I only fly domestic routes, can I still collect and participate in the program?

Champions for Children can collect on ALL international flights. In addition to international Champions for Children, domestic Champions for Children CAN collect on international flights as long as they operate between the U.S. and Canada, Caribbean, and Mexico – i.e. DFW-MEX, ORD-YYZ, LAX-YYZ, etc. Register today on Jetnet, and begin collecting on your next flight!

How can I log my volunteer hours and benefit the charity of my choice?

Once an AA employee has logged 50 volunteer hours through the "Flights for 50" program, they can donate 25,000 miles to the charity of their choice with 501(c)(3) status. Sign in to newjetnet.aa.com, select "Get Involved" from top menu, then "Flights for 50". Email docrew@aa.com if you have questions.

How can I support UNICEF - in addition to collecting Change for Good?

You can donate 25,000 miles to UNICEF USA for every 50 volunteer hours logged via the "Flights for 50" program (see above). Volunteer hours include any volunteer efforts, you can log 4 hours for every Change for Good in-flight collection and deposit process made. This is a great way to further support UNICEF USA and help more children worldwide. Go to newjetnet/Get Involved/Flights for 50. In the organization name field, type "UNICEF USA".

  • Organization name: UNICEF USA
  • TAX ID#: 13-1760110 
  • Address: 125 Maiden Lane, New York, NY 10038

One other way to support UNICEF is host a social media fundraiser. Champions have created birthday fundraisers on Facebook (or other social media platforms) as an additional method to raise more money for UNICEF's life-saving programs,

What happens to the monies that are collected and then brought to operations and deposited into a safe collection box?

The money is safely stored until it is shipped to a currency processor, which is managed by UNICEF USA. Once received by the processor, the money is counted and a monthly wire transfer is sent to the UNICEF USA. Change for Good collections are never deposited into any kind of account (interest bearing or otherwise).

Where can I get program, impact and collections updates?

Visit the microsite created especially for Champions for Children at www.unicefusa.org/champions – check back frequently for updates. You will receive monthly collections updates from championsforchildren@aa.com when you register with your email address. Also, for important program updates and to view or share collection photos, please join our private Facebook group "UNICEF Champions for Children" and follow our Champions for Children Facebook community page and UNICEF Champions Instagram [unicefchampions].

Check out the Field Visits section of the Champions microsite which includes more program information, stories, and photos from past UNICEF field visits. Click here to go to the Field Visit section.

How can I join the Champions for Children Facebook community?

Search our private Facebook group UNICEF Champions for Children and ask to join. Also, all registered Champions receive an invite to join this group. For the public community page, visit www.facebook.com/championsforchildren and click "like." Please invite your fellow Champions to "like" as well!

Where can I learn more about the UNICEF field visits Champions for Children have participated in?

Check out the new Field Visit section on the Champions microsite at which includes information, stories, and photos from the past UNICEF field visits with Champions. Click here to go the Field Visits section.

I have a question, comment, suggestion, or story to share about Change for Good and/or Champions for Children – whom do I contact?

We love hearing from all of you! Email championsforchildren@aa.com with your questions, stories, or to update your email address. That mailbox is monitored by a fellow American Airlines Flight Attendant Champion for Children volunteer involved with the program. We also encourage you to share comments/suggestions/stories/photos on our Facebook page/group mentioned above.

I have a great in-flight collection story – how do I submit it?

We love to receive these stories and will feature them on social or on the Champions microsite – please send us your stories along with a photo (and the customer’s permission to use it if available) to championsforchildren@aa.com. We also encourage you to directly share stories to our Champions Facebook group/page. Thanks!

Should I worry if CBP or TSA staff inspects my UNICEF collection bag at customs or security?

Due to heightened security nationwide, CBP and TSA staff may from time to time be required to further inspect your UNICEF collection bag at customs or security. On the rare occasions that this does happen, don’t be alarmed – it is the result of either a random selection or an X-ray alarm situation. Please email championsforchildren@aa.com if you ever have an issue with CPT/TSA.

Does American get a tax credit or tax deduction for monies collected to support UNICEF through Change for Good?

American Airlines receives no financial benefit from Champions' efforts - no tax incentives, no charges, no earned interest. American takes pride in the effort so many Champions engage in and do highlight this great cause (along with others) to the public. You can see these efforts at www.aa.com/joinus

Does American charge UNICEF USA for collecting the funds raised through Change for Good or reap any financial benefit from the program?

No. This is the process:

• Donations are collected by flight attendant Champions for Children and immediately placed into one of the UNICEF safes at base by the Champion.

• Money dropped in the UNICEF safe is kept in the safe until local Flight Service personnel remove it. Local flight service personnel notify UNICEF USA’s currency processor that a pick-up is needed, and a pick-up takes place.

• The money is never deposited into any kind of account (interest bearing or otherwise); it is simply safely stored until it is shipped to a money-processor.

• Once received by the processor, the money is counted and a wire transfer is made to UNICEF USA.

Since American never deposits the money, there is no way to "get credit" or a tax break - the money belongs to and is solely transferred to UNICEF USA.

Since Change for Good funds are collected by flight attendant volunteers, what is American’s role in the program?

American's participation in the program (which is also conducted on a number of other airlines in the world) is simply to advertise the program to flight attendants (including collection results and opportunities that arise from participation such as the chance to attend a UNICEF field visit) and customers, and to make bags available at the Crew Service Center offices around the world. American also agrees to upload videos to the aircraft.

What do I do if I see suspicious behavior?

Please report specific concerns to Professional Standards: 817.540.0108, aa.ethicspoint.com, the APFA, or email us at championsforchildren@aa.com.  Your concern will remain anonymous and appropriate Professional Standards action will be taken. You may also write to the FA who monitors the inbox here at: championsforchildren@aa.com.

I am concerned about the theft rumors I hear. Can I get fired for collecting?

We have heard you loud and clear.  To help ensure accountability, we ask all Champions to use the required Buddy Witness System for deposits of UNICEF collections.  Please follow these procedures: Make a PA; play the video; collect donations; mark your location on the back of the bag; seal and sign the bag with your Buddy Witness; then deposit the bag in a UNICEF safe at base. On the return flight after a layover (overnight), you must show your original Buddy Witness the same, sealed, signed bag from the U.S. outbound flight.

When you deposit your collections in the safe at base -- please offer to your crew the opportunity to witness your deposit.  It's as easy as that.  It makes sense that if it is known that this is expected procedure, then there is no reason for someone to not follow it.  If you are depositing in the safe outside customs, please ask the person behind you to just watch you quickly deposit the collections in the safe.  It only takes a few moments.

On occasion, we hear concerns about inappropriate behavior and call the flight attendant in question to clarify expectations. In many cases, the FA responds that he/she was unaware of procedures, leading to concerns that the money was being taken off the aircraft. The APFA has been very helpful in these conversations and is as committed as American is to making sure that all collections end up where they belong: to the UNICEF USA. We have also activated a Professional Standards protocol for this program through the APFA.

If you have any concerns, PLEASE, contact us at: championsforchildren@aa.com and we will take action immediately. Do not allow your concerns to dampen your enthusiasm! Many Champions have been to the field with UNICEF and seen first-hand the great results made possible by Champions.  Your Change for Good collections (around $1 million per year average over the past eight years!) are definitely making a significant difference in improving the lives of children worldwide.  Thank you for your dedication and amazing efforts.

What is Trick-or-Treat for UNICEF? And how do I participate through Change for Good on American Airlines?

For more than 60 years, Trick-or-Treat for UNICEF has served as the original Kids Helping Kids campaign. Flight Attendant Champions can Trick-or-Treat for UNICEF through Change for Good on American Airlines.  

What is Airline Ambassadors International’s role in the program?

In December 2006, American Airlines and the UNICEF USA, proudly supported by Airline Ambassadors International, the APFA, and the Oneworld Alliance, introduced the “Champions for Children” volunteer program and re-launched UNICEF’s Change for Good® program on American Airlines on board select flights and at Admirals Club locations. Airline Ambassadors International served as a Proud Supporter of UNICEF’s Change for Good program on American Airlines from December 2006 through December 2012. To learn more about AAI, visit http://www.airlineamb.org.

More resources about UNICEF and the UNICEF USA

•           What is UNICEF?

•           What is the UNICEF USA's mission?

•           What does UNICEF do?

•           What does UNICEF do for children in the U.S.?

•           Where does UNICEF get its funding?

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