Charity Highlight: Operation Good Cheer

I don’t know what it is about the holiday season that really makes me want to highlight some of the coolest charities out there, but I want to do this annually. 

Last year, I talked about how amazing Toys for Tots is for the little ones in need.

This year, I want to introduce everyone to Operation Good Cheer.

The fantastic charity event is in its 50th year! It’s one of the longest-running charity events out there. It’s also the same age as the iconic Walt Disney World, so I think that is some sort of divine sign about how much it means to the children that experience it.

If you follow me on any social media platform you may have noticed I’m starting to get my pilot’s license and have become completely obsessed with aviation. In fact, I’ve made my personal blog primarily about what it’s like to go from being a flight attendant to a pilot.

That’s why it makes total sense that I would want to talk about how amazing Operation Good Cheer is. 

Operation Good Cheer is a charity event that happens every year at the beginning of December. In the state of Michigan, helicopter and airplane pilots (small personal aircraft, not airline size) will take donated gifts bought for foster children off their “wish list” to various airports to be distributed. 

Operation Good Cheer | OptAir
[Image via OptAir]
Operation Good Cheer is sponsored and coordinated by Child and Family Services of Michigan, Inc.

The event gathers donations on December 4th and pilots make their deliveries on December 5th. 

Operation Good Cheer is 100% volunteer-based. Not a single person that is involved with this charity is paid. This puts it up on the same level as Toys for Tots in that sense. 

That also means all the pilots are doing this on their own dime. To give you a sense of what that means, it costs roughly $135 to rent an airplane for a single hour. That includes gas. 

Operation Good Cheer makes Christmas wishes come true

Any charity that helps kids celebrate anything is amazing, but it’s even more powerful when a charity helps children in the foster system to know that they are loved and people in the world care. 

Michigan is currently the only state that I can find that has this program, but if you’re interested in volunteering, check out their website and see if there is a way you can get involved and help.

You might even be able to reach out to see what it takes to start an event like this at a local airport near you. Once I get my pilot’s license, I will for sure find a way to give back in a similar way to this.

Here is a video that gives a little taste of what the event entails:

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