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Southwest Airlines Community

Ronald McDonald House Charities

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dscf0029.JPGOne of the neat things that we get to do at Southwest Airlines is host a dinner at a local Ronald McDonald House each quarter.  At this quarter's  Ronald McDonald house dinner in Chicago, we had a baseball theme.   dscf0001.JPGThe House is located in Lincoln Park and serves the Chicago Children's Hospital.  dscf0002.JPGRyan Vokac and co-chairperson Liz Adams (Southwest Flight Attendants) coordinate quarterly events where they gather both food and Southwest volunteers and go to the house for the afternoon and dscf0018.JPGcook the entire house a meal that evening.  They also set up various activities to do with the kids.  These events include art projects, games, etc.dscf0016.JPGdscf0028.JPG What makes Southwest Airlines stand out is that we actually bring our PEOPLE to the house and do a very personable hands-on evening at the house.  We do not send over a catered meal and a nice card.  Our Employees are actually there cooking a meal and doing arts and crafts with the kids and the other residents there.dscf0019.JPGdscf0011.JPG The house holds 21 families, and with the other family members, staff, and us of course...we cook for over 100 people.  It  is a production but our volunteers really rise to the challenge, and we can say that there is always enough food and prizes for the kids...and there is also enough to pack away for the the residents to eat later after they return from their sessions at the hospital.  Southwest Airlines is now one of the favorite hosts of the Ronald McDonald House Chicago! 
4 Comments
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I thought about volunteering at the Ronald McDonald House. There is one just a short distance down the street from one of our local hospitals. I volunteered at this hospital (St. Francis) for five years in two departments at a time. I volunteered in the Children's Hospital (at SFH) for five years, Outpatient Surgery Discharge for one year, Eastern Oklahoma Perinatal Center (EOPC) one summer as a substitute cuddler, & the Gift Shop for 10 months. When I volunteered in the Children's Hospital, some of the kids & teens I worked with died; when they did, I thought I wanted to quit. I didn't, though, because I knew I'd regret it if I did. As you can tell, I certainly enjoyed my volunteer work & found it very rewarding. I miss it a lot! Perhaps I could volunteer in Pediatrics again in the evening once a week.
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Beautiful! I love that Southwest actually "walks the walk" when it comes to philanthropy work! Keep it up! Nicole, still applying online and about to cross the line between persistent and annoying. 😉
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Is Liz Adams related to FA Carole? I was just wondering. 🙂 One reason why I want to work for the Company is that you all do a lot of good for the community! When I volunteered in Pediatrics at SFH, one of my main responsibilities was doing crafts with the patients! Well, they would do them & I would help if needed. It was fun! I've also helped with crafts during Vacation Bible School (VBS) in Anchorage! 🙂
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James, I have cooked at the Dallas Ronald McDonald House, and it is such a rewarding evening. I never cease to walk away with amazement over what the House staff can accomplish and also with empathy for the families. These families could be anyone of us, and the Ronald McDonald Houses are a great place for which anyone can volunteer. Brian