As the season comes to an end, we're excited to share some highlights of the actions we have taken to expand commitment to Promise to Place. We embraced the beauty that surrounds us and focused on positive impacts on the environment and fostering meaningful connections with our local communities.
Our commitment to cultural awareness and collaboration with Indigenous partners took center stage. By learning about local history and traditions we enhanced our understanding and demonstrated our commitment to Truth & Reconciliation. On National Day of Truth and Reconciliation, we welcomed Indigenous guests with more than 1,400 free tickets to our attractions.
We translated the success we achieved as a team into destination leadership by partnering with Indigenous Tourism Alberta and Banff Lake Louise Tourism to expand Indigenous cultural awareness training for team members destination wide. Banff and Jasper also had the opportunity to engage in land-based learning through medicine walks and tea ceremonies with Indigenous knowledge keepers.
As part of our goal to be leaders in sustainable tourism, we partnered with GreenStep who are helping us accelerate our stewardship goals. We're proud to be on the path to becoming a global benchmark for sustainable tourism.
Additionally, and to demonstrate our leadership, Stuart Back, chief operating officer, Banff Jasper Collection penned an opinion piece that was published by the Calgary Herald. His article dove into a sustainable partnership in Banff that's setting an exceptional example within our industry. It emphasizes the significance of leaders coming together for the good of the environment and the places they operate.
Throughout the year, we organized successful community dinners in Banff and Jasper as part of our fundraising efforts to help support our communities. Rooms were abuzz with conversation and laughter as guests enjoyed a delicious meal prepared with heart by our chefs. Proceeds from the events were donated to the Pursuit Community Fund. The Pursuit Community Fund is a collection of funds raised from events, such as Locals Days, community dinners, garage sales, bake sales and donations. With over $200,000 we supported nine charities across Banff, Golden, Jasper and Waterton.
In our ongoing efforts to nurture a diverse and inclusive workplace, we officially became a signatory to the 2023 Bow Valley Workplace Inclusion Charter. Through active engagement with the Bow Valley Workplace Inclusion Charter, we strive to make meaningful contributions towards fostering a more diverse and inclusive workplace.
Team members collectively and individually volunteered their time and resources to support non-profits in the Bow Valley and Jasper. We encouraged team members to volunteer through the Community Volunteer Program where we matched donations with $10 per volunteer to a cause or charity of the team member’s choice. This program stimulated 329 new volunteer hours into local organizations needing support.
Through our partnership with Calgary Catholic Immigration Services (CCIS), we provided an unforgettable getaway for 100 new Canadians who visited Banff National Park for the first time through the Canada Connect Program. To date this program has created an indelible connection for more than 2,300 new Canadians to their national parks.
To finish the year, we are directing our fundraising efforts to local causes that help vulnerable families and individuals to enjoy their holiday season.
We are building a team of passionate people determined to make a difference in the places we love. Every effort counts. Meet more of them here and discover how Promise to Place is the real deal.