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CFC asks Airmen to ‘go the extra yard’

VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. -- The Combined Federal Campaign is the world's largest annual workplace charity campaign and accepts pledges from federal civilian, postal and military employees. Although the official campaign will end at Vandenberg Dec. 12, gifts will be accepted until Jan 15. 2014.

Despite cutbacks and possible economic woes, Tech. Sgt. Nathan McAlister, 30th Medical Group CFC representative, had no doubts that Airmen will continue to give.

"I'm not concerned about generating solicitation and people donating," McAlister said. "People always want to donate. Even when individuals are facing harder times or stresses they still have a want and a need to give and to support something outside of their specific circle of family and friends."

The CFC allows Airmen to choose from a wide variety of charities supporting different causes.

"For me personally, it's what has affected me - assisting breast cancer because of my grandmother, or colon cancer because of my grandfather, or my brother is diabetic," said McAlister. "There really is something for everyone. If you want to donate and you want to give back you can find something in that booklet that will strike your heart. For the individual, it's limitless."

Donations may be made online or through squadron representatives. Additionally, a new feature introduced this year allows for Department of Defense employees to create an online pledge through the Defense Finance and Accounting Service's MyPay website. Vandenberg DOD employees can do so using the assigned Campaign Number 0115 and City/State Code 060538.

On Thursday, the first "CFC Bowl" closing event will be held at 7:30 p.m. at the intramural field.

"Usually it's a standard fundraising barbeque, but we wanted to get a little bit more creative this year," said 1st Lt. Lucas Gelardi, 30th Security Forces Squadron CFC representative, in reference to the introduction of the CFC Bowl. "We wanted to raise awareness in a new way. The theme - 'Go the Extra Yard' - encourages Airmen to donate and help out these organizations."

Gelardi believes that the CFC is about more than funds.

"It shows that we, as military, also give," Gelardi continued. "We receive a lot from the community but we give back not only in our daily duties and putting our lives on the line for our country but also monetarily supporting organizations, which a lot of people don't realize we do. It's your opportunity to strike people's hearts in a different way."