By Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Amy Kirk, USS Dwight D. Eisenhower Public Affairs
April 20, 2010 - USS DWIGHT D. EISENHOWER, At Sea (NNS) -- Sailors aboard aircraft carrier USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN 69) raised more than $100,000 for Navy Marine Corps Relief Society (NMCRS) after a fund drive that ended April 18.
Eisenhower Sailors bested last year's fundraising efforts by more than $20,000. Additionally, according to officials at Commander Naval Air Force Atlantic, Eisenhower was the top fundraising ship in the fleet, said Lt. Sarah McPeek, Eisenhower NMCRS campaign co-chairperson.
This year's annual fund drive began March 1 aboard the aircraft carrier, boasting events such as raffles, the winner of which could be commanding officer, executive officer or command master chief for a day, and a 3-point shoot-out competition.
"The fund drive was extremely successful," said Chief Electrician's Mate Stephen Jolly, Eisenhower NMCRS campaign co-chairperson. "We raised a good amount of money for a great cause, and the crew had fun while doing it."
McPeek said all money raised for NMCRS goes directly to Sailors by providing loans or grants for emergent needs.
"They also offer a great $300 no-interest quick loan, which helps prevent Sailors from going to get payday loans, which are typically very high interest," said Jolly. "Plus, new moms and dads can get layettes for their newborn babies for free."
Other programs NMCRS offers which benefit Sailors and their families include the Budget for Baby program, thrift shops, food lockers and educational programs offering scholarships and no-interest loans.
According to nmcrs.org the NMCRS received $10.1 million in donations from active duty service members, and $2.5 million from retired Sailors and Marines in 2009. This past year, NMCRS assisted 91,418 Sailors, Marines and their families with financial support, a 17 percent increase from previous years.
Additionally, NMCRS provided more than $47.4 million in interest-free loans and grants.
The NMCRS has been helping Sailors and Marines with financial emergencies since its inception in 1904. Eisenhower Sailors have assisted this cause, ensuring help is available for other Navy and Marine Corps families in times of need.
Eisenhower is underway as part of a regularly scheduled deployment to the U.S. 5th Fleet Area of Responsibility (AOR). Operations in the 5th Fleet AOR are focused on reassuring regional partners of the coalition's commitment to help set conditions for security and stability. U.S. forces maintain a naval and air presence in the region that deters destabilizing activities while safeguarding the region's vital links to the global economy.