FORT WAINWRIGHT, Alaska - Although Alaska covers a large amount of land, it is still known for a hardy group of people with a cooperative spirit who often depend on each other to thrive and survive. In cities, villages and neighborhoods there are unified organizations that provide assistance.

The Fort Wainwright Community Spouses' Club is one of those local teams that helps support Army Families through charitable scholarships and welfare grants.

This year the Fort Wainwright CSC was able to donate $14,500. "None of this could have been achieved without the hard work of the board, the members, the volunteers and our supporters in the community," said Lisa Braun, scholarship committee member.

Scholarship award recipients must be accepted to an accredited institution for the upcoming school year and are selected by a blind review process in the following four categories: high school student jointly enrolled in college courses, graduating high school senior, full-time college student and adult continuing education.

In the adult continuing education category, Miranda, wife of 1Lt. John Pelham, 5th Squadron, 1st Calvary Regiment, 1st Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division, received $1,000.

Full-time college student Chloe, daughter of Candy and Col. Ronald M. Johnson, commander, United States Army Garrison Fort Wainwright, was awarded $2,500, as well as high school senior, Ashley, daughter of Tina and Maj. Ronald Locklear, United States Army Garrison Fort Wainwright plans officer. Locklear also received an additional $1,000 from the Martin Luther King Jr. Hoops for Scholars program.

The CSC also distributed $8,500 in welfare grants to Fort Wainwright community members in need of assistance.

Guest speaker at the ceremony was Carolyne, wife of the Civilian Aide to the Secretary of the Army, Chick Wallace.

Wallace said, "I am so proud of these ladies (in the CSC). For a small group they work so hard and do so many important things for the community. I appreciate being asked to talk and share stories at these functions. They do great things and provide the support necessary for the Army Families stationed at Fort Wainwright." Wallace has been part of the group since 1972.