For Sailors and Marines facing unexpected expenses such as traveling to a funeral, needing help paying bills, or with a move, the Navy Marine Corps Relief Society is there to provide financial support. A lot of that financial support comes from service membersâ donations.
At the March 16 kick-off event for the Active Duty Fund Drive at Naval Support Activity Bethesda, NMCRS President and CEO Steve Abbot said active duty contributions and those made by retired service members made up two-thirds of the revenue the society uses to provide assistance to Sailors and Marines as well as other service members.
In 2016, the organization provided $45 million in loans and grants to 56,365 Sailors and Marines. The NMCRS Bethesda helped 437 of those.
âBehind every one of those 56,000 people is an individual who needed help at the time,â Abbot said. âAnd with a story that Gillian (Connon) and her other fellow directors around the world were able to listen to, and evaluate, and then help with the need.â
The annual effort goes until April 30. Last year, the NSAB drive raised $50,233, according to NMCRS Bethesda Director Gillian Connon.
âOver the next couple of weeks, youâll be seeing active duty members asking for contributions,â said Navy Ensign Cyndele McVeigh, NSABâs 2017 fund drive coordinator. âI highly encourage you; please give if you have the ability to give because every dollar counts.â
As an example, NMCRS pointed The Journal to Navy Chief John Prass. He recounted his experience receiving financial aid from the Society when he was starting his military career in 2005.
âI had two sons, one was four and one was a newborn and living in this area; it was extremely expensive,â he said. âAnd to bring my wife here and my two sons and trying to get daycare it was ridiculous. And my…