Last month, AFW’s Utah volunteers brought holiday cheer to the students of Sunset Elementary School via this year’s Santa Flight! Since 2000, pilots have filled their airplanes with school supplies, books, hats, coats, backpacks, and toys for students at Title One schools in rural communities.
We extend a sincere thank you to all our volunteers for making this possible, including the incredible Santa Flight coordination team: Phil Titus, Steve Bollinger, Lou Rossi and Joanne Brattain.
From Julie Smith, Principal at Sunset Elementary
“Our school was selected to participate in Santa Flight this year. We had an amazing experience! The Angel Flight team met with us very early to plan and address questions. We met several times in person and virtually throughout the process. The Angel Flight staff was amazing to work with! They organized everything and had a great itinerary that was followed for the assembly.
“Our school is a Title One, walking school. Our students were excited to ride a bus out to the airport for the event. We let parents know about the event several months in advance so they could share the QR code for donations and we could ensure that we had a permission slip for every child. We used grant funds to pay buses and for a beanie, gloves, and book for every child and had volunteers come help us wrap these gifts for children to open the morning of the event. Our students wore their beanies and gloves to the airport where they sat in a hanger and watched the planes come in and Santa and Mrs. Claus arrive. We had a short program and the students sang songs with Santa and got a candy cane.
“We received donations of toys, clothes, shoes, coats, etc. and were able to provide a complete Christmas for 50+ students and clothing for at least that many more students. Every student at our school also received multiple books. The whole experience was positive and is a memory that our students will have forever. I am so glad that I was able to learn about Angel Flight and the amazing organization that it is. They do incredible work and were professional and organized throughout the whole process. I would jump at the chance to participate again!”