COMMENTARY: The gift of giving during CFC-O

CAMP LEMONNIER, Djibouti  (Sept. 17, 2012) - U.S. Navy Capt. Kevin Bertelsen, left, Camp Lemonnier commander, U.S. Navy Cdr. Israel Harden, Camp Lemonnier executive officer, and U.S. Marine Corps Sgt. Maj. Gary Smith, Combined Joint Task Force - Horn of Africa command senior enlisted leader, sign pledge sheets at the Combined Federal Campaign - Overseas kick-off ceremony held in conjunction with Camp Lemonnier's Sunday Night Football tail gate party Sept. 16, 2012. With the support of camp leadership, the joint troops deployed to the Horn of Africa have a goal of achieving 40-percent participation for this year's campaign. CFC began Sept. 17 and runs until Nov 16. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Dan St. Pierre) CJTF-HOA Photo CAMP LEMONNIER, Djibouti (Sept. 17, 2012) - U.S. Navy Capt. Kevin Bertelsen, left, Camp Lemonnier commander, U.S. Navy Cdr. Israel Harden, Camp Lemonnier executive officer, and U.S. Marine Corps Sgt. Maj. Gary Smith, Combined Joint Task Force - Horn of Africa command senior enlisted leader, sign pledge sheets at the Combined Federal Campaign - Overseas kick-off ceremony held in conjunction with Camp Lemonnier's Sunday Night Football tail gate party Sept. 16, 2012. With the support of camp leadership, the joint troops deployed to the Horn of Africa have a goal of achieving 40-percent participation for this year's campaign. CFC began Sept. 17 and runs until Nov 16. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Dan St. Pierre)

I enjoy serving as a volunteer and giving to organizations I feel passionate about. As a Reservist, I am not usually exposed to the Combined Federal Campaign - Overseas, but this year I will have an opportunity to contribute where it will count. Soon I'll search for that special organization to which I will make a donation - and I encourage you to join me in doing so.

The CFC began in the early 1960s so federal employees would only be solicited once in the workplace. Through the CFC you may elect to give by having contributions deducted right from your paycheck. It is a totally painless way to do a lot of good.

There are hundreds of options for giving. You choose which ones you want to support. You may contribute to the research and treatment of medical conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, Alzheimer's, and more, or you can donate to provide Morale, Welfare and Recreation activities in your local area.

You can support political organizations whose mission you are passionate about - ones that undergird the work of charities that provide services to children, youth, adults, veterans, and even animal rescue programs. There are sports charities, religious charities, orones that protect and preserve the environment. The variety of options will surely include something you can wholeheartedly support.

Alfred North Whitehead, the philosopher, once remarked that a wise person is one who plants shade trees he/she may never sit under. By that, he referred to the impulse in life that gives not only for present enjoyment, but also for the benefit of the next generation. Whether you choose to invest in the present or the future, giving through the Combined Federal Campaign - Overseas this year will be a means to do so.

You can give any amount from a dollar a pay period and up. Whatever amount you choose to give will make a positive difference. So, why not join me, and let's do something good together!

Servicemembers assigned to the Combined Joint Task Force - Horn of Africa can expect to contacted by unit representatives for their opportunity to contribute to CFC-O.

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