Kansas City Southern’s (KCS) Holiday Express program has raised nearly $120,000 this year to benefit The Salvation Army in 21 communities across its U.S. rail network, and the Class I railroad has issued a challenge grant to raise even more.
KCS reported in September that it would not operate its Holiday Express train for the second consecutive year due to the pandemic, but the railroad is celebrating the program’s 21st anniversary with the fundraiser.
“On this Giving Tuesday, I am proud to announce that KCS will donate $2 for every $1 raised by the Holiday Express project, up to an additional $100,000, between November 30 and December 10, 2021,” KCS President and CEO Patrick J. Ottensmeyer said. “Please consider a gift to help The Salvation Army keep hope marching on for families in need.”
This year, even without scheduled train stops, the following 21 communities will receive the funds KCS raises for The Salvation Army: Kansas City and Slater, Mo.; East St. Louis, Ill.; Pittsburg, Kans.; Ashdown and Mena, Ark.; Poteau and Stilwell, Okla.; Houston, Laredo, Port Arthur, Victoria and Wylie, Tex.; Baton Rouge, DeQuincy, Gonzalez and Shreveport, La.; and Corinth, Jackson, Meridian and Vicksburg, Miss.
Major sponsors to date include: Bartlett, a Savage Company; Deanne Porter and Patrick Ottensmeyer Family Foundation; Haverty Family Foundation; Husch Blackwell; Jim and Janet Kennedy Charitable Trust and Google; Kansas City Southern Historical Society; Mi-Jack Products; RailPros; Watco; and ZA Construction.
Over the past 20 years, the KCS Holiday Express project has raised more than $2.6 million, which has been distributed to The Salvation Army to help provide warm clothing and other necessities for children in need.