Since March, Southwest Airlines has worked tirelessly to support our Employees, Customers, and communities impacted by the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Despite continued challenges to our business, it’s inspiring to see our Employees come together to think creatively and help those in need.
Southwest has put our Heart in Action to respond in meaningful and authentic ways. In fact, through our cumulative efforts, we’ve provided more than $1 million in support to help those on the frontlines of this crisis. We remain dedicated to serving in unique ways that are true to Southwest to help our communities when they need us most.
Our crisis response efforts started with donations of flights and cargo services. We provided more than 150 complimentary flights for medical personnel to assist in highly-impacted areas. We also donated our cargo services to humanitarian relief organizations shipping PPE, ventilators, and other life-saving medical devices across the country.
With many of our training classes going virtual, there was a decreased need in hotel rooms previously reserved. Southwest coordinated with our longtime partner the Ronald McDonald House of Dallas (RMHD) to put these hotel rooms to good use! We donated 160 hotel rooms to RMHD for families needing assistance while the House was unable to accept new family guests for health and Safety reasons.
This year, we celebrated the 35th LUV Classic & Party in a unique way by donating $1 million to 101 local charities focused on serving children, their families, and communities. with a special focus on COVID-19 relief efforts. This donation was timely and critical to ensure these organizations can continue their missions. It’s important to note, this donation was made from existing LUV Classic event funds housed at the Silicon Valley Community Foundation (SVCF) and is separate from the Company’s operating budget.
In May, we engaged our Customers through a giving campaign to help build resilient communities. Customers who donated a minimum of $25 to Feeding America, American Red Cross, and Team Rubicon were offered 10x the Rapid Rewards® Points for each dollar given. Through this promotion, our Customers donated more than $650,000 to support the vital services needed for families across the country impacted by COVID-19.
With food shortages across the U.S., we identified a unique opportunity to donate our inflight snack and beverage service product that was currently going unused. Through this donation, we were able to provide nearly 13 tractor-trailers full of product to 15 food banks nationwide. These donations were valued at $655,000 and in addition to the food banks, they supported hospitals and community partners.
While many zoos remain closed around the country, our friends in the animal kingdom still need to eat, too. So, when the Denver Zoo reached out to our Cargo Team for help transporting food for their animals, we happily donated our shipping services to get these animals the grub they needed.
For nearly 50 years, Southwest has connected people and championed communities. As a Company, we marshal our resources to help the communities thrive where our Employees and Customers live and work. Even in times of financial crisis, the Southwest Family rallied to find creative resources to show communities that we are more than just an airline, we are their neighbor.