To advance our Corporate Responsibility efforts, we focus on three principles: loving People, building resilience, and living responsibly. We bring these principles to life by investing in partnerships and programs that drive economic, social, and environmental impact. Through our investments and initiatives, we generate value for our Customers, our business, and our communities.
We put our Hearts in action by mobilizing our Employees to do well by doing good, developing programs to empower and meet the needs of our diverse communities, and engaging with business, civic, and community leaders to be a globally trusted corporate citizen fostering authentic relationships that empower communities.
Whether in the air or on the ground, we believe community is more than a place—it’s at the Heart of what brings us together.
National & Local Giving
Southwest Airlines® cultivates relationships with more than 400 local and national organizations to generate impact across our communities. Our giving focuses on several strategic areas including workforce development, diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI), and environmental sustainability.
Southwest® invests in workforce development programs that introduce students to the diverse set of career opportunities in the aviation industry. From pilots to accountants and everything in between, we partner with nonprofits and schools to help students soar to new heights in jobs of the future.
Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI)
Southwest has supported our diverse communities across the country for more than two decades, investing in community programs tailored to accelerate social and economic advancement. Learn more about our DEI efforts, awards, and partnerships here.
Southwest seeks to affect meaningful change by investing in transformational programs and initiatives that complement our efforts to achieve net zero carbon emissions by 2050. This includes our award winning environmental sustainability program: Repurpose with Purpose.
Human Trafficking Awareness
Southwest understands it is important that we do our part to understand the issue of Human Trafficking, be able to identify indicators of Human Trafficking instances, and advocate for those who may be in a difficult situation. We’re proud to support nonprofit organizations whose efforts help with the rescue, recovery, and restoration of Human Trafficking survivors. These organizations include Polaris, United Against Human Trafficking, Rethreaded, Ho‘ōla Nā Pua, Rescue America, and Ayuda.
Southwest is proud to provide scholarships each year to students across the United States. Through these scholarships, we hope to encourage students to explore careers in the aviation industry and strengthen Southwest’s efforts toward building a diverse talent pipeline—all while encouraging students to soar through learning!
Southwest supports two scholarship opportunities. The Southwest Airlines Scholarship seeks to build a diverse talent pipeline, while inspiring future generations to find careers within the airline industry. The Herbert D. Kelleher and Rollin W. King Scholarship was established for eligible dependents of Southwest Airlines Employees to pursue higher education.
Request for Donations
Through our pillars of loving People, building resilience, and living responsibly, we are invested in supporting local communities where our Customers and Employees live and work and take a partnership-driven approach to our donations and grant making. As much as we’d like to support all the meaningful requests that come our way, we simply aren’t able to. As such, we aren’t able to accept unsolicited requests for support. We appreciate your understanding and applaud your commitment to building strong and resilient communities.
Our Adopt-A-Pilot Program has inspired thousands of fifth-grade students across the country to explore careers in aviation through fun, STEM-centered activities and experiments since 1997. The program connects Southwest Pilots with classrooms to engage students in aviation-related lessons that define a plan for future success and spark an interest in careers in aviation.
¡Lánzate!/Take Off! Travel Award Program
As longtime supporters of the Hispanic community, we know the impact familial ties can have on the success of a student’s educational journey. Our signature ¡Lánzate!/Take Off! Travel Award Program, in partnership with the Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities awards airline tickets to Hispanic students pursuing higher education (undergraduate and graduate) more than 200 miles from home. The program helps students to reduce the financial burden of traveling home during the school year and allows them to focus on their college career. In 2023, we awarded four roundtrip tickets to 185 students.
Medical Transportation Grant Program
The Medical Transportation Grant Program provides complimentary round trip tickets to nonprofit hospitals and medical transportation organizations, lessening the financial burden on patients and their families when travel is required for specialized lifesaving or life-changing medical care. Since 2007, Southwest has provided free transportation valued at more than $42 million to 117 nonprofit hospitals and medical organizations across 28 states.
Repurpose with Purpose
Repurpose with Purpose is one of our signature programs that gives back to communities, all while helping Southwest show our Heart for the Planet.
Through this global sustainability initiative, more than a million pounds of aircraft seat leather have been upcycled into new products. Partnering with organizations to reimagine thousands of pounds of leather annually helps to keep the material out of landfills.
Learn more about the Repurpose with Purpose Program.
Southwest Employees create community wherever they are by putting their hearts in action through volunteerism, spreading kindness, and giving back.
Tickets for Time
To honor and appreciate our Employee volunteers who give their time and talents to 501(c)(3) nonprofits and schools, Southwest donates one round trip ticket (up to six tickets per calendar year) for every 40 hours that Employees volunteer with that organization.
Every year, hundreds of Southwest Employees go beyond their normal roles and responsibilities to serve as Volunteer Ambassadors supporting our Heart in Action Employee impact program and initiatives.
Through supporting traveling Make-A-Wish families, serving dinner at Ronald McDonald Houses across the country, or supporting Earth Month, our Volunteer Ambassadors play a key role in championing the causes that matter most to our Employees and Company. These Volunteer Ambassadors help extend the Southwest Heart to make a positive impact in the communities where we live and work.
Employees Catastrophic Assistance Charity
The Southwest Airlines Employees Catastrophic Assistance Charity provides Employees with a place to turn for financial assistance during a catastrophic event in their lives. Since its founding in 1990, the Charity has awarded more than $16 million in catastrophic assistance and support. The Charity is primarily funded through Employee payroll deductions, but also receives funding from private donations, honorariums, and fundraisers.
The Southwest Airlines One Report
Explore our annual corporate social responsibility report, the Southwest Airlines One Report. This integrated Citizenship report covers significant social, economic, and environmental stories, as well as data tables, and reporting frameworks, all through the lens of corporate Citizenship. Our disclosures have been prepared in reference to the following standards: the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI), the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) framework, the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (SASB) standards, and the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).