Imagine what your life would be like if you had never gone on a vacation before. Your days are consumed with doctor’s appointments, and you’ve never even had the chance to step on a plane.
When Kidd Kraddick, a syndicated radio personality, first came to Southwest in 2007 asking for our support of his organization, Kidd’s Kids, we knew it would be special. Since then, Southwest has sponsored the annual Kidd’s Kids trip—an all-expenses paid five-day trip for critically and terminally ill children and their families to Walt Disney World in Orlando with a special charter and send-off party. During this magical time, the families can take a break from worry, medical treatments, and hospitals to just enjoy themselves.
To raise support for the annual journey, Southwest Airlines and The Kraddick Foundation designate a Kidd’s Kids Day each year. On this day, Southwest Employees answer phones and collect donations from Kidd Kraddick in the Morning listeners. This year, 75 Employees volunteered their time to be part of the heartfelt legacy of Kidd Kraddick and took callas that raised $75,000!
I am truly proud to work for an airline that supports such a great cause, alongside many of my big-hearted Coworkers. Cami Simonis, from the Communication & Outreach Department and third-year volunteer, said, “I love hearing the stories from the donors. I spoke to a grandmother who allows each of her five grandchildren to donate $100 to the cause of their choice, and this year, they selected Kidd’s Kids. What an awesome way to teach your grandchildren about giving to others, and what a generous donation of $500 toward a memory that lasts a lifetime.” When asked why she volunteers, Carla Pope, from the Finance Department and a first-year volunteer said, “I lost my 29 year-old daughter three years ago. Volunteering for Kidd’s Kids is my way of keeping her spirit alive.”
This marks the first year the Kidd’s Kids trip will go on without its beloved founder, Kidd Kraddick, who died suddenly this summer. Southwest is proud to continue his legacy of giving back, both at the telethon and at the annual send-off event in Dallas on November 21! For more information about Kidd’s Kids, visit kiddskids.com.