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Fisher House Joins Agencies Distributing 'Gifts From the Homefront'

Special to American Forces Press Service

DALLAS, Oct. 7, 2003 – Fisher House has agreed to distribute "Certifichecks" to wounded military personnel through its programs supporting military hospitals.

The organization is joining forces with the Army and Air Force Exchange Service to help Americans contribute to the morale and well-being of service members serving in operations Enduring Freedom and Iraqi Freedom, officials said.

Fisher Houses provide a "home away from home" for service members and their families while a loved one is hospitalized at one of the military's major medical centers.

"We are delighted to partner with AAFES to ensure donated CertifiChecks are distributed at the military's major medical centers supporting service members wounded or injured in Iraq, Afghanistan and the surrounding areas," said Fisher House Foundation chairman Kenneth Fisher.

"More often than not," he continued, "these heroes arrive at the medical centers in their battle dress uniforms or hospital gowns, and nothing else. Family members staying at the nearby Fisher House will be able to shop for clothing and personal items at the exchange and bring them to their loved one in the hospital."

"Gifts from the Homefront" gift certificates are redeemable for merchandise at all AAFES post and base exchanges, including the more than 40 stores throughout Southwest Asia.

With the addition of this new option, Americans now have four ways to send a "Gift from the Homefront" gift certificate to a loved one, family member or friend associated with the U.S. military. The others are:

Gift certificates are mailed directly by CertifiChecks to a specific authorized AAFES patron if the purchaser has the patron's name and address.

People wishing to support service members can contribute to the Air Force Aid Society. The official charity of the U.S. Air Force accepts "Gifts From the Homefront" gift certificates from anyone who wishes to contribute the certificates to Air Force members and their families.

The American Red Cross distributes "Gifts From the Homefront" with the help of its Armed Forces Emergency Services workers deployed around the world to support U.S. service members.

AAFES officials said the exchange service continually is working to add organizations to the list of those who will help with the distribution of "CertifiChecks" to U.S. service members and their families, units or nonspecific troops. Details are available at the AAFES Web site, and by phone at (877) 770-GIFT (4438).

Sold by CertifiChecks, the gift certificates can be purchased 24 hours a day, seven days a week, every day of the year, and come in denominations of $10 or $20 for donations to any authorized AAFES patrons.

"Gifts From the Homefront" can be purchased by anyone with a U.S. credit card or check, but only authorized AAFES customers can redeem them at base or post exchanges.

The standard cost for the certificates is $4.95 per order, which covers the costs for printing, mailing and handling of up to 20 certificates per order to a single address. Delivery takes four to 10 days, possibly longer if going overseas. Shipping and handling charges are slightly higher for bulk orders of $300 or more.

(Courtesy of Army and Air Force Exchange Service.)

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