Southwest Airlines Wins Help Heal Veterans Partner of the Year 2018

Southwest Airlines Wins Help Heal Veterans Partner of the Year 2018

WINCHESTER, Calif.Aug. 7, 2019 - Help Heal Veterans (Heal Vets), a non-profit dedicated to serving military veterans by supplying them with therapeutic craft kits, have chosen Southwest Airlines as 2018 Partner of the Year. Also recognized alongside Southwest Airlines is Arise Veteran Foundation, as co-Partner of the Year recipients.

Their combined contributions kept 80,000 pounds of materials upcycled and out of landfills. Therapeutic Crafts produced from Southwest Airlines and Arise Veteran Foundation donations using leather & foam from seats has created over 1.1 million dollars in retail value of kits and produced 37,805 kits to veterans in need. 

CEO of Help Heal Veterans, Joe McClain said, "We have been upcycling material for over 20 years making not only a positive impact in veterans' lives but a positive impact in the environment as well." In 2018 Help Heal Veterans repurposed 320,000 pounds of materials by recycling and upcycling, creating 91,442 therapeutic kits over the last to help veterans heal, totaling $3,000,000 in retail value of new therapeutic kits.

Thanks to the donations by partners, Help Heal Veterans can uphold an environmental policy that protects the environment through waste minimalization. Help Heal Veterans upcycles materials from donors that would otherwise contribute to landfill waste in the United States. Help Heal Veterans aspires to reshape the way manufacturers work to achieve significant and lasting improvement and social outcomes. 

Therapeutic craft kits produced by the donation of 6,094 plane seats, from over 42 planes, created 11 different types of kits: 

Billfolds, wallets, biker wallets, neck ID, checkbook covers, stadium seats and lumbar pillows turned into 31,577 kits with a retail value of $875,503.

Foam from Southwest Airlines seats were used as moccasin liners that produced 6,228 Moccasins kits with a value of $275,738.

"We are honored to receive this award for our joint work through our Repurpose with Purpose initiative," said Laura Nieto, Community Outreach Director. "At Southwest, respecting our resources is important to us and by working with such great partners we are able to continue our commitment to living responsibly impacting communities all over."

About Southwest Airlines Co. 
In its 48th year of service, Dallas-based Southwest Airlines Co. (NYSE: LUV) continues to differentiate itself from other air carriers with exemplary Customer Service delivered by more than 58,000 employees to a customer base topping 120 million passengers annually. Southwest became the nation's largest domestic air carrier in 2003 and maintains that ranking based on the U.S. Department of Transportation's most recent reporting of domestic originating passengers boarded. In peak travel seasons, Southwest operates more than 4,000 weekday departures among a network of 99 destinations in  and 10 additional countries. Southwest has announced its intention to serve >span class="xn-location">Hawaii, subject to requisite governmental approvals.

Southwest coined Transfarency to describe its purposed philosophy of treating Customers honestly and fairly, and low fares actually staying low. Southwest is the only major U.S. airline to offer bags fly free to everyone (first and second checked pieces of luggage, size and weight limits apply, some carriers offer free checked bags on select routes or in qualified circumstances), and there are no change fees, though fare differences might apply.

Southwest is one of the most honored airlines in the world, known for a triple bottom line approach that contributes to the carrier's performance and productivity, the importance of its People and the communities they serve, and an overall commitment to efficiency and the planet. Learn more about how the carrier gives back to communities across the world by visiting

About Help Heal Veterans 
A nonprofit organization founded during the Vietnam War, supplies free arts-and-crafts kits to injured servicemen and women and U.S. veterans. The kits often become a part of the patient's treatment plan, providing a creative outlet for stress and boredom and a way to rebuild confidence and self-esteem. Help Heal Veterans has distributed more than 29 million kits since 1971 from hundreds of craft categories.


CFC GuideStar Great Non-Profits 2018 Veterans Employer of the Year