INCIRLIK AIR BASE, Turkey --
The annual Air Force Assistance Fund campaign at Incirlik Air Base will officially kick off March 15 and run through April 23.
The AF Assistance Fund raises money for four charities that take care of Airmen, Guardians, and their families. The Air Force Enlisted Village, the General and Mrs. Curtis E. LeMay Foundation, the Air Force Villages Charitable Foundation, and the Air Force Aid Society.
“Nearly everyone in the service knows someone who has benefitted from one of these four charities. The Air Force Assistance Fund is unique in that it’s the only official Air Force campaign that is ‘by airmen and guardians, for airmen and guardians’, meaning everything that we give goes right back to our community” said Master Sgt. Brian Suminski, Incirlik’s installation project officer. “This year’s theme is “For Airmen and Guardians, by Airmen and Guardians.”
The AFAF supports active-duty, eligible Air National Guard and Reserve Airmen, as well as retirees, spouses, immediate family members and surviving family members of deceased retirees.
Donating is now easier than ever. Airmen and Guardians may make donations by visiting http://www.afassistancefund.org and clicking the donate button. Members may contribute via e-check, debit or credit card. To donate with a paper check, a donation form is available on the site, which can be filled out, printed, and mailed in along with the check. If the donor is a retiree, a payroll deduction plan is also available.
“Because the AFAF is a ‘for us, by us’ campaign, key workers and unit project officers are limited to soliciting donations from uniformed Air Force and retired members; however, civilians and contractors who would like to donate may easily do so by using the e-Giving platform, Suminski added. “If you need more information and have not been contacted, reach out to your Airman & Family Readiness Center’s Air Force Aid Society Officer. They will also be able to get you in touch with your unit’s Key Workers or Unit Project Officer.”
“Last year’s campaign raised $2.13 million toward the charities, even as the pandemic shutdowns were just starting the week after the campaign began. This year’s goal, is to raise $4.5 million.”
“It’s difficult for our campaign workers to go desk-to-desk with so many members teleworking, and it’s just not safe to do so in this COVID environment,” he added. “We’re doing what we can this year by using e-Giving platforms and peer-to-peer fundraising so our campaign workers have more tools at their disposal and our contributors have more avenues to donate.”
The Air Force Aid Society helps active duty Airmen and Guardians in times of emergencies by providing loans and grants, and supports base enhancement programs.
The Air Force Enlisted Village, for enlisted widows and widowers, and the Air Force Villages Charitable Foundation, for officer widows and widowers, provide a secure and friendly place to live among friends with a similar background.
The LeMay Foundation supports widows and widowers of Air Force retirees, both officer and enlisted, in the event of a financial need, by giving grants of assistance.
Suminski said the team of charities is committed to helping Airmen, Guardians and their families, but can only do so with support to the campaigns.
“These charities give so much back to our community, and they are only able to continue providing assistance because our predecessors gave to the AFAF campaign for the past 47 years,” he said. “Now it’s our turn to pay it forward. Today we may be donating, but tomorrow we may be calling for assistance.”
Specific AFAF campaign dates for each installation may vary. To watch informational videos about AFAF, visit the AFAF YouTube page at https://www.youtube.com/AFAssistancefund.