‘Heart as big as Texas:’ How volunteer ambassadors help Houston Airport passengers during holiday travel season

Airports in Houston and nationwide are packed with crowds during this sometimes stressful holiday travel season. Houston airports have a secret weapon to help.

‘Heart as big as Texas:’ How volunteer ambassadors help Houston Airport passengers during holiday travel season

HOUSTON — In the middle of the holiday travel season chaos, a volunteer program aims to help travelers at Houston airports by providing valuable information and a friendly presence.

The Volunteer Ambassador Program at Houston Airports is staffed by people like Pat Yates – a retired school teacher.

At her information desk, Yates greets travelers and answers questions, among them where people should go for ride-sharing app pick up locations or how to get from one terminal to another.

“I’ve had such a rewarding experience on many occasions now of helping people who just seemed somewhat lost, and I’ve been that in that position myself and it’s not fun,” Yates told KHOU 11 News. “So, I try my best and I’m sure everybody else does as well to just make them feel welcome.”

The program is in place year-round, but leaders say it is especially important during the holiday travel season, when airport traffic is among the busiest in the year.

“The volunteer ambassadors, they know so much and their heart is big, big as Texas is, and they want to help,” Manager of Volunteer Outreach Initiatives Ella Ghicka said. “There’s no limit to how much they want to help.”

People who are interested in joining the program can learn more here.

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