By Jennifer Bacchus, AMCSeptember 15, 2011
ANNISTON ARMY DEPOT, Ala. -- Abused children, cancer patients, students in need of a safe place to study after school and millions of other nameless, faceless people in need are helped through the Combined Federal Campaign each year.
At Anniston Army Depot, CFC keypeople and coordinators put a face and a name on each donation through tours of local charities and testimonials from employees whose lives or hearts were touched by a CFC organization.
"I give to Parris Home, because, to me, when someone is willing to take a child in at 1 or 2 a.m., and that child has nothing, that is something we should all think about," said Kim Smoot, CFC chairperson for the depot.
Smoot, who said she prefers to give locally, has been involved in CFC since shortly after beginning her depot career.
In addition to Parris Home, she gives to the Calhoun-Cleburne Children's Center, an organization for abused children; the Boys and Girls Clubs of East Central Alabama; and the American Red Cross -- all agencies that work in the Anniston area.
Smoot sees a lot of need in the community and encourages everyone considering giving to the CFC to take part in one of the tours offered each year during the campaign.
The tours give donors a close look at where the money will be spent in each organization.
The depot's goal of $400,000 represents help, and hope, for many nonprofits struggling to give aid to their communities.
Pam Scruggs, secretary for the depot's deputy to the commander, and Mark Cleghorn, supervisor of Visual Information, each also choose to charities within the surrounding community.
Scruggs said she has always chosen organizations that mean something to her on a personal level.
"At one time, I was giving to a hospice agency, but then our local hospice was deleted from the list. About that time, my father, who had Alzheimer's, passed away, so I started giving to an Alzheimer's charity," said Scruggs. "Last year, I started giving to Parris Home because it is in my community."
Cleghorn went from donating to a national organization to a local one last year because of a need he saw in the area.
"Normally, I give to Focus on the Family, but, last year, I decided to give locally because I know our local agencies are hurting," said Cleghorn. "My son and I used to work with Meals-on-Wheels on off-Fridays and I know they not only need funds, but volunteers as well."
The last day to turn in CFC pledge cards on the installation is Dec. 15.
Turning them in on or before that date will ensure timely distribution of funds to the various CFC-approved agencies.