ABERDEEN PROVING GROUND, Md. - The president of Armed Forces Communications Electronics Association's Aberdeen chapter presented a $3,339 check to APG's Army Community Service during their "Thanks for Giving" fall social Nov. 16 at the APG North recreation center.

The social and donation were in honor of former CECOM commander Gen. Alfred J. Mallette.

In attendance were CECOM Soldiers and civilians, and Mallette's son who works at APG. Appetizers were served and door prizes, including an Amazon Kindle and $50 gift cards to Panera Bread, were given to a lucky few during the event.

AFCEA Aberdeen Chapter President Alyssa Ranson said the donation was made to help Soldiers and Families in need during the holiday season.

"We wanted to do something for the Soldiers during the holidays," she said. "I talked to (the garrison's) Command Sgt. Maj. Rhoades about my idea, and he suggested I talk to ACS. We decided to give to ACS because we wanted the money to go directly to helping needy soldiers and their Families."

AFCEA is an international non-profit organization made up of information technology professionals who regularly donate to military organizations and award scholarships to students pursuing STEM degrees.

"Last summer, AFCEA gave away $26,000 in scholarsships to students in the science, technology, engineering and mathematics fields," Ranson said.

"One of our other missions is to help Soldiers," Ranson said. "We do a lot of work with Fisher House. Two weeks ago, AFCEA joined with Chesapeake Science and Security Coorider and went to Walter Reed Army Medical Center to hand out approximately $3,000 in gift cards to all of the Wounded Warriors."

Although this was AFCEA's first donation to ACS, Ranson said it was not the last. She said more events are being planned for the upcoming year to aid APG Soldiers.

"Every year, we're adding more and more events."

Despite the ongoing economic recession, the organization continues to give.

"With tightening budgets and the state of the economy, it really means a lot when organizations like AFCEA are able to donate to military Families," said Arcelio Alleyne, ACS financial readiness program manager.

"The donation is deposited in the ACS IMWRF fund to purchase $25 food vouchers that can be used at military commissaries," Alleyne said. "These vouchers will be distributed to APG service members and their Families who are in need of additional financial assistance this holiday season. Over 100 service members and their Families will use these vouchers to help purchase food items for their Christmas dinner."

To make a donation to Army Community Service, visit http://www.apgmwr.com/community/acs-donations.html.