‘Tis the season for thinking of others, a tradition ExpressJet people have long held. With more than 9,000 employees at 10 crew bases and 17 Maintenance locations, our people have a lot of opportunity to give back to their communities.
“I am continuously amazed by the generosity of our people,” said Cathy Harris, vice president – People Resources. “From donating toys for needy children, to raising funds for various charities, to collecting toiletries and canned foods for those less fortunate, our people are always looking for ways to support our communities.”
This year our people across the country participated in dozens of drives, events and fundraisers to help those less fortunate. While our people participate in charitable activities year-round (Bert’s Big Adventure, Locks of Love, Movember and breast cancer walks just to name a few), here’s a snapshot of how our people are giving back this holiday season:
Shreveport raises $3,167 for Muscular Dystrophy Association in one day
Our Shreveport Maintenance base decided to host a “lock in” on Dec. 10 to raise funds for the Muscular Dystrophy Association. A lock in is where volunteers get “locked up” and have to raise money to “bail themselves out.” The team set “bail” at $200 and chose 14 volunteers, in two shifts, to post photos of themselves behind bars on their social media pages to ask for “bail money.” The goal was to raise $2,400 which the team beat by $757 for a total raised of $3,167. The MDA was so excited by ExpressJet’s contributions that they sent a giant check, organization representatives and, most importantly, a 5-year-old boy with muscular dystrophy to the hangar for a presentation ceremony.
Crew Planning & Training Scheduling departments adopt two families for Secret Santa Christmas
To say our Crew Planning and Training Scheduling departments love holidays is an understatement. From Halloween to St. Patty’s Day, to birthdays and Christmas, they go all out. A long-standing tradition is Secret Santa where the 21-person team exchange names and purchase gifts, in secret, for each other. This year, the team decided to purchase gifts for a needy family instead of treating each other. They “adopted” two underprivileged families through Families First, an Atlanta-based charity, and purchased clothing, necessities, toys and games for four adults and seven children ranging in age from two to ten. They set a $30 limit (which nearly everyone broke) and purchased dozens of gifts to make this Christmas special for the families.
ExpressJet people donate 600+ gifts to Toys for Tots
A long-standing tradition at ExpressJet is partnering with Toys for Tots to give gifts to those less fortunate. From Secret Santa Pilot, whose family anonymously donates 150+ toys each year, to our ATL crew base which has donated 2,204 toys since 2008, to the Uhaul full of toys and 45 bikes donated to Toys for Tots at our headquarters right now – ExpressJet cares about the kids. This year team members in Atlanta, Cleveland, Dallas, Houston and Chicago filled boxes with toys to donate to local kids.
Knoxville collected canned goods for Second Harvest Food Bank
Our Maintenance team in Knoxville always participates in a charitable organization over the holidays, and this year they collected non-perishables and canned food donations for people in need. Our teams in Knoxville donated more than 185 pounds of food this year – enough to feed 152 people! Second Harvest Food Bank is East Tennessee’s largest hunger-relief charity feeding thousands each year.
Houston and Chicago collect toiletries
One perk of staying in hotel rooms while flying trips is the mini-toiletries crew members can save to donate to those in need. Our teams in Houston and Chicago are collecting toiletries and basic hygiene essentials for SafePlace in Austin. SafePlace supports victims of sexual and domestic violence through safety, healing, prevention and social change. Toiletries donated this holiday season will help provide basic necessities for these victims.
Atlanta, Houston and Kansas City support Ronald McDonald House
The Ronald McDonald House Charities (RMHC) supports families while they support their children fighting a major illness or injury. RMHC helps reduce financial strain on parents in an already difficult situation by providing room, board and necessities near the hospital for those traveling from out of town. They also help provide basic medical and dental care in a vulnerable community. Our teams in Atlanta, Houston and Kansas City area collecting toiletries, gently used luggage and coats, soda can pop tabs and pantry items for RMHC.
Kansas City base supports local Union Mission and Children’s Literacy Program
Our Kansas City base is also collecting tooth brushes and toothpaste to the support the Kansas City Union Mission, and dictionaries for the Children’s Literacy Program. The Union Mission supports the city’s homeless population by providing basic necessities, shelter and meals, and the Children’s Literacy Program promotes reading and literacy beginning in childhood.
Dulles team collects jackets for One Warm Coat
One Warm Coat started in 1992 and has since provided thousands of jackets to those in need, free of charge. Our Dulles base in Virginia is collecting new and gently used jackets and coats at the base to support this charity. Clean out your closets today and help someone in need make it through a cold winter!
Dallas collects winter weather gear for S.I.S.T.A.S.
Our Dallas base is collecting gently used jackets, gloves, scarves, hand warmers, blankets and socks for the local area homeless. S.I.S.T.A.S. is a non-profit organization that aims to empower women across all ethnic and socio-economic lines. Our Dallas team is partnering with the organization to keep those in need warm this winter.
How do you give back during the holidays, or all year long?