Defense Department Kicks Off 2009 CFC Campaign
By Army Sgt. 1st Class Michael J. Carden
American Forces Press Service
WASHINGTON, Sept. 16, 2009 The Defense Department can lend a hand to Americans affected by the past year’s economic crisis through donations to the Combined Federal Campaign, Deputy Defense Secretary William J. Lynn said today at the Pentagon’s CFC kickoff ceremony.
As of August, the unemployment rate increased to 9.7 percent, leaving nearly 15 million Americans without jobs. CFC contributions can make a positive impact on the lives of those in need, Lynn said.
“President Obama has said that America’s success depends on the ability to extend opportunity to every willing heart, and the CFC enables us to do just that,” Lynn said to a group of senior civilian and military leaders. “I ask everyone here and every organization and service to go out and champion the message of the Combined Federal Campaign and donate whatever you’re able to do.”
Through the CFC, Defense Department employees have the opportunity to give money to charities that feed the homeless, research leading-edge medical technology to save lives and to organizations that provide humanitarian assistance to impoverished regions around the globe. More than 4,000 charities are listed in the CFC beneficiary catalog, making it the largest workplace giving campaign in the world.
The CFC campaign has out-pledged its previous year’s goal for five straight years. The Defense Department’s 2009 campaign goal is to raise $14.1 million, the program’s highest benchmark yet. Last year’s campaign exceeded its $13.3 million goal by raising more $16 million in donations.
Service goals for this year CFC National Capital Area campaign are $3.85 million from the Navy and Marine Corps, $3.12 million from the Army and $1.8 million from the Air Force. All increased their previous year’s goals.
“The CFC is a tremendous and important effort,” the deputy defense secretary said. “It has consistently been a leader in workplace giving, and the numbers are impressive.”
The CFC campaign began Sept. 1 and runs through Dec. 15. This year’s theme is “The Power of Community, the Compassion of Individuals.”
Michael L. Rhodes, acting director of administration and management for the Office of the Secretary of Defense, said the theme was chosen and fitting because of the challenges many people face in today’s economic crisis.
“Many families have been hit hard by economic situations at home,” Rhodes said. “The strength of our department has always been our people. All the participating charities in that catalog need support from folks like you and those you contact throughout the department.”