Spreading Wings

The St. Louis-based humanitarian organization Wings of Hope broke ground on a 10,000-square-foot expansion to its STL world headquarters in December. The organization—twice nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize—operates domestically and internationally from 155 bases in 46 countries. Some bases have a school, others operate mobile medical clinics—it all depends on what the area’s need is. “We help the poor become self-sufficient by not just teaching them to fish, but giving them the fishing pole,” says Vice President Michele Rutledge. “We wait until we’re invited and let them tell us what they need.” Domestically, the charity operates in 26 states as an air-transport service for children and adults who require medical treatment in other cities. Wings of Hope recently expanded into Burma, Cambodia and Paraguay, among others, and the new building is needed for additional office and hangar space. It is expected to be completed by May.

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