FedEx And Greyhound Lines Sponsor Educational Journey
MEMPHIS, Tenn., (May 31, 2000) - The Underground Railroad, the secret passageway for thousands of Africans in their quest for freedom from slavery, will be retraced in June by a group of Memphis children and senior citizens.
Federal Express Corporation ("FedEx") and Greyhound Lines are co-sponsoring the trip, which will take 90 children, senior citizens and chaperones from Memphis to southern Ontario, Canada, during the week of June 6-13. Several FedEx employees, who annually organize similar educational trips for underprivileged Memphis youth, are coordinating the journey, with Greyhound providing bus transportation.
The intergenerational group will depart Memphis Tuesday, June 6, for Niagara Falls, Ontario, Canada which will serve as the base for the group, as day trips are made to various sites in western New York and eastern Michigan. Dressed in period clothing, tour guides from Motherland Connextions will lead the group in daily excursions to historic Underground Railroad locations. During the five-day stay, they will cross the Niagara Falls suspension bridge, just as Harriet Tubman did enroute to St. Catharines, Ontario; participate in a traditional African praise ceremony, called a libation; and take part in a nighttime Underground Railroad reenactment, which will bring history alive with costumed guides, bounty hunters and animals.
The children are part of Goodwill Homes Community Services, Inc., which helps break the cycle of poverty by offering a broad spectrum of community programs that improves the life status of underprivileged children and families. The seniors, who are active in the Goodwill Homes Senior Center (a non-profit program that provides community activities as well as educational and fitness programs for seniors), will act as surrogate grandparents for the children during the trip.
"The Underground Railroad tour will give these underprivileged children the opportunity to experience the secret passageways Africans braved for their freedom," said Craig Lentzsch, president and CEO, Greyhound Lines. "I'm proud Greyhound can play a role in helping to educate children about African-American history."
"By retracing the route of the Underground Railroad, these Memphis children will experience the story of what may have been this country's first multi-cultural humanitarian effort. The Underground Railroad involved courageous African Americans, Native Americans and European Americans who risked life and property to shelter the weary and frightened freedom seekers," said Linda Carter, Manager, FedEx Corporate Culture & Awareness. "FedEx strongly believes in providing support of humanitarian, educational, civic and artistic efforts, and this trip is just one of the many ways FedEx give back to the community."
Greyhound Lines, Inc., is the largest North American provider of intercity bus transportation, serving more than 3,700 destinations with 20,000 daily departures across the continent. The company also provides package and courier express service, charter and tour services and food service at certain terminals. In the U.S., for Greyhound fare and schedule information call 1-800-231-2222 or visit the Web site at www.greyhound.com. In Canada, for fare and schedule information call 1-800-661-8747 or visit the Web site at www.greyhound.ca.
FedEx Corp. is the premier global provider of transportation, logistics, e-commerce and supply chain management services. The company offers integrated business solutions through a network of subsidiaries operating independently, including: FedEx Express, the world's largest express transportation company; FedEx Ground, North America's second largest provider of small package ground delivery service; FedEx Custom Critical, the world's largest provider of expedited time-critical shipments; FedEx Logistics, an integrated logistics, technology and transportation-solution company; FedEx Trade Networks Inc., providing customs brokerage, consulting, information technology and trade facilitation solutions; and Viking Freight, the leading regional freight carrier in western United States. More than 2.5 million customers are connected electronically through the FedEx information network and approximately two-thirds of its U.S. domestic transactions are now handled on-line.