Over the summer I read about a program where Southwest donated leather from some of their airplane’s seats to a good cause.
The leather seats were swapped out for EVOLVE, seats which maximize space and increase the amount (of seats) from 137 to 143. (You can read more about EVOLVE here.)
When the airline removed the old seats, what would they do with the leather? Rather than just throw it away or recycle it, they decided to “upcycle” it. The leather seat coverings were donated to make “new products that support local communities“. The initial program would help to support communities in Kenya, Malawi and the U.S.
I’ve never heard of upcycling before but learned about it in an article from Southwest’s blog Nuts About Southwest. Upcycling ” is the process of converting waste materials into new materials or products of better quality/better environmental value.”
A variety of products were planned to be made from the leather but one of them stood out- soccer balls. (Find out more about the program here.)
I can’t say that I’ve thought much more about the program until a couple of days back. I came across a tweet from Southwest.
Southwest shared a link on Twitter to the soccer ball purchase page.
Lucas started getting interested in soccer last summer while we were at Prospect Park (in Brooklyn, NY) and had the chance to kick a ball around for a bit. While he isn’t yet in any league or anything like that, he still mentions soccer at times.
I’m thinking of buying one of Southwest’s limited edition Luv Seat Soccer Balls for a couple of reasons. Lucas would probably love the ball and the money goes to help a good cause. It sounds like a win-win purchase to me!
One Luv Seat Soccer Ball goes for $25 which sounds pretty reasonable considering the story behind it. (The shipping is a bit pricey though!) Even if you don’t like soccer, it sounds like a great airline-related collectible!
What do you think of Southwest’s upcycle initiative? I think it was a brilliant plan and I give them a big thumbs up!
If you’re interested in buying a Southwest Luv Seat Soccer Ball, click here.