Financial management Soldiers support the team
September 1, 2009
CAMP TAJI, Iraq - The "Blackhawks" of B Detachment, 101st Financial Management Company out of Fort Campbell, Ky., work hard to spread the wealth beyond the walls of Camp Taji, Iraq.
Since arriving here in January 2009, the financial management support teams of B Det. have traveled to outlying joint-service stations, to provide financial support to areas without access to a finance office.
Each Financial Management Support Team (FMST) is comprised of a cashier and a certifier. The team's goal is to give service members in austere environments an opportunity to receive casual pay, load money onto their Eagle Cash Card, deposit money into their Savings Deposit Program accounts, cash checks or submit pay inquiries.
B Det.'s FMSTs service JSS Istiqlal, Old Mod, Ur, Apache, Shield and Sadr City. For many service members at these locations, the FMST's visits offer the only opportunity to obtain cash and have their personal pay questions answered.
Spc. Josh Lee of Memphis, Tenn., said he is proud to serve Soldiers throughout Iraq.
"Just having cash in their pockets lifted their morale," said Lee. "I'm really grateful for having a hand in that."
Along with raising Soldiers' morale, finance missions help service members with basic needs. Spc. Xinyu Bi, a native of Reading, Pa., and a cashier for the FMST, said casual pay enables Soldiers to purchase goods such as shampoo and toothpaste, items necessary for daily living - a luxury often taken for granted.
Cpl. Daniel Valoaga, a native of Fort Riley, Kan., said answering service members' questions about their leave and earnings statements helps ease their minds, allowing them to focus on the mission at hand.
The members of the FMST are proud to support Soldiers, said Lee.
"Overall, these missions have kept me on my toes and made me realize that life has so much more to offer, especially if you do your part," he said.