Marine Corps Logistics Base Albany --
Base officials announced the kick-off of the 2009 Navy and Marine Corps Relief Society Campaign that will run through May 20.
“”The money we raise here goes to the national office. Adn we get more back from them than what we send,” said Terry Cosper, NMCRS representative at Marine Corps Logistics Base Albany, Ga. “We distributed approximately $78,000 here last year.”
Larger Marine Corps installations distribute millions of dollars in emergency funds to eligible recipients through the NMCRS. Marine Corps Base, Camp Pendleton, Calif., in 2008, provided more than $3.5 million in emergency assistance funds, which included grants and interest-free loans, to more than 3,100 Marines, sailors and their families.
“This year, we’re looking at various ways to raise money and we’re finalizing those plans now. The most important thing to remember is that the NMCRS provides support to many people each year,” added Cosper.
The NMCRS fund drive is one of only two fundraisers allowed to solicit money from active-duty servicemembers. The Combined Federal Campaign is the other fund drive and takes place in the fall of each year. Donations collected by the CFC are distributed among organizations worldwide. NMCRS money is focused on Marines and sailors.
“NMCRS is all about emergency needs. If a servicemember has emergency leave, and needs money for the trip, we can fund that travel and in most cases it’s a payback situation. We set up a payroll deduction payment plan the servicemember can handle and we don’t charge interest on the funds,” said Cosper.
Other services include vehicle repairs that are deemed necessary for a servicemember’s daily trip to work. The vehicle repair approval process follows a strict procedure, including determining if a vehicle is worth the cost of repairs, a visual inspection of the vehicle and, if approved, a check for the funds is issued directly to the repair facility which performs the work, not to the individual servicemember.
“We don’t loan money for down payments on vehicles or to pay off credit cards or to fund legal judgements and such,” said Cosper.
He also explained that NMCRS is willing to work with service personnel who are having trouble managing their money.
“If a Marine took out a payday loan downtown just to get some money, we may loan them money to pay off that high interest loan and repay a NMCRS loan with no interest. It’s a huge savings for them,” Cosper added.
All money raised for NMCRS, through donations, payroll deductions or other means, goes to assist service personnel around the world.
NMCRS activities at MCLB Albany are available to members of other services. In such situations, Cosper would evaluate and take action on a request from a member of another service. Then, if NMCRS provided funds in the case, the individual’s own service relief agency would reimburse NMCRS.
For additional information on NMCRS, visit www.nmcrs.org or call Terry Cosper at (229) 639-5426.