YONGSAN GARRISON, South Korea -- With the 2015 Combined Federal Campaign-Overseas (CFC-O) scheduled to kick off in just a few days beginning Sept. 21, Eighth Army has made it a priority to improve on last year's level of participation.

"The participation level was very low last year," said Capt. Shavon Salausa, Eighth Army personnel office plans and operations officer and this year's CFC-O representative. "In 2014 we only had 22.9% of our potential donors actually contribute to the campaign."

"This year the (Eighth Army) Commanding General's goal is to raise participation by at least 10%. We are hoping to reach that goal by better reaching out to the public and letting them know how much their support means."

During the 2014 campaign Eighth Army raised an estimated $853,908, and a 10% increase would push this year's donation to nearly $940,000. Each year those funds go on to support charities all over the world, but also impact military quality of life programs right here in the Yongsan Garrison community.

In fact earlier this year in August, Yongsan Garrison received over $23,849 to be used towards Family Support and Youth Programs.

The annual federal campaign began back in 1957 under President Dwight D. Eisenhower and over the years it has evolved to become more efficient. The driving force behind most of the changes has been the program's primary goal, which is to help those less fortunate.

"This is the time to donate," Salausa continued. "You can really help all kinds of people in need, like people with cancer or children who are unable to help themselves."

Individuals that don't want to make a lump-sum donation have the option to spread their contribution over the course of the year through payroll allotment or recurring credit or debit card payments. It might surprise a lot of people, but it only takes a few dollars a month to help find cures for diseases, feed the hungry, house those displaced by disaster, or provide therapy for service members returning from deployment.

Another way the Federal government has made it easier than ever to donate is by providing donors with three available ways to contribute.

"There are three options for giving this year," she explained. "One option is "E-Giving" at the website cfcoverseas.org, but you can also donate through MyPay with automatic debit, or contribute the old fashioned way by using the cards."

By visiting the website potential donors also have the opportunity to research over 20,000 approved charities to find out how the funds will be used and earmark which organizations they want to donate to.

This year's fundraiser is scheduled to run from Sept. 21 through Nov. 20. Individuals interested in learning more about the program should speak to their unit CFC-O representative for more details.