Big Win for the Kids: Cool Campaigns through Autism Speaks, Cars 4 Classrooms, and Build a Miracle

It’s all about the kiddos—in cars and planes!

On April 7, Autism Speaks, Mission Federal Credit Union, and Southwest Airlines pulled off a mock "Autism Flight." More than 120 local parents and children were able to experience the entire process of air travel at San Diego Airport, actually going through check-in, security, and boarding. When everyone boarded the plane and the cabin doors closed, a volunteer Southwest crew went through all the motions—from seatbelt check to snack service. It was a rare opportunity to orient first-time fliers and give them the chance to meet the Captain as well as see the flight deck. What a successful "trip" for local families!

Big Win for the Kids: Cool Campaigns through Autism Speaks, Cars 4 Classrooms, and Build a Miracle

Students and parents at Chula Vista’s Harborside Elementary School were able to test drive the all-new Chrysler Pacifica and Pacifica Hybrid Minivan at an event called Chrysler Cars 4 Classrooms. The National City dealership donated $10 to the school for every test drive, raising a total of $870.

Big Win for the Kids: Cool Campaigns through Autism Speaks, Cars 4 Classrooms, and Build a Miracle

Daniella Benitez, 13 and an 8th-grader at Notre Dame Academy in Carmel Valley, raised money to build a home in Tijuana for a family of five. Having worked previously with San Diego nonprofit Build a Miracle (BAM), Benitez wanted to do more. In 2017, she launched a GoFundMe campaign and supplemented with babysitting and bake sale money, raising a grand total of $16,000. Fast forward to February and March 2018—three trips to Tijuana with BAM volunteers yielded a new house for a family that had been sleeping on a single mattress and had no toilet. Incredible work, Daniella. We love to hear this good news.


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