The 45th annual Air Force Assistance Fund campaign at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base kicks off March 26 and runs through May 4. It raises funds for AFAF-affiliated charities that assist active-duty, Reserve, Guard and retired Air Force personnel and their families. (Metro News Service photo)

AFAF campaign benefits Air Force charities

With a theme of “Commitment to Caring,” the 45th annual Air Force Assistance Fund campaign at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base kicks off March 26 and runs through May 4.

The AFAF campaign raises funds for AFAF-affiliated charities that assist active-duty, Reserve, Guard and retired Air Force personnel and their families.

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In 2017, Wright-Patterson Airmen contributed $130,256.17; this year’s campaign goal is $122,986, said 2nd Lt. Thatcher Hallock, installation project officer.

A free coffee, donut and breakfast goodies event scheduled for March 26 from 9 to 11 a.m. at the USO Community Center, Bldg. 1222, Area A, will serve as the base’s campaign kickoff. Col. Bradley McDonald, 88th Air Base Wing commander, is expected to speak at 10 a.m. Families are welcome to attend.

“It will be a great way to meet some of the people working on the campaign – the unit project officers – and enjoy a free breakfast,” Hallock said.

Airmen have the option to donate to one or more of the four AFAF charities: Air Force Village Charitable Foundation, the Air Force Aid Society, the Air Force Enlisted Village, and the Gen. and Mrs. Curtis E. LeMay Foundation.

“The reason I am so excited to work on this campaign is because it literally makes a difference in the lives of Airmen. It is Airmen giving back to Airmen,” he said. “It is our opportunity to take care of each other.”

One example of how some of the funds may be used, Hallock said, is a first sergeant using his or her discretion to direct financial assistance to a young Airman with a new baby. That Airman and his or her family may be struggling to afford things for the child. With AFAF funds, the family’s quality of life may be improved.

Another example, he pointed to, is financially assisting veterans and retirees.

“For me, this is the most important thing we do each year because we are taking care of the Air Force family,” Hallock said.

Although there is a large civilian population at Wright-Patterson AFB, civilians cannot be solicited for donations but are invited to contribute. Civilians who wish to contribute to AFAF should contact their unit project officer.

Donations to the AFAF can be made by cash or check, and active-duty and retired members can utilize the convenience of payroll deduction via completion of a form. Contributions to the AFAF may be tax deductible.

For more information, contact a unit project officer or the installation project officers: 2nd Lt. Thatcher Hallock, 937-257-0770; or Master Sgt. Jerry Fondren, 937-257-0493. Additional information on AFAF is available online at www.afassistancefund.org.

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