NMCRS hosts annual recognition ceremony

Diana Zuniga, casework lead at Navy Marine Corps Relief Society Pearl Harbor, speaks with a client at the society’s office aboard Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Aug. 30.

Story and photo by Kristen Wong

Life and Leisure Editor, Ho‘okele

Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society (NMCRS) Pearl Harbor recognized the units and representatives that contributed to this year’s active duty fund drive. A ceremony for the awards was held Aug. 29 at Hickam Memorial Theater.

The fund drive began Feb. 9 and ran through March 23. Donations for the drive, however, were still accepted through the end of May.

The goal this year was to make 100 percent contact with individuals in each unit, and make them aware of the campaign, according to Paul Belanger, the director of NMCRS Pearl Harbor.

Personnel raised $411,487 this year, an increase from the previous year. Rear Adm. Brian Fort, the commanding officer of Navy Region Hawaii and Naval Surface Group Middle Pacific, attended the ceremony. Fort said that thanks to the society, a Sailor he knew was able to remedy a financial issue they were having due to a payday lender. He expressed his gratitude for everyone’s efforts.

“Unlike a bank which charges interest on loans that they provide — and that’s how they make their money to cover their overhead — Navy Marine Corps Relief Society is a nonprofit and everything that we do for assistance is interest free,” Belanger said.

“Without a good fund drive, we have no other means of income to cover our overhead and to be able to continue assisting Sailors and Marines … the fund drive is crucial to our continued ability to provide financial assistance to Sailors, Marines, retirees and their families.”

The society supports active duty Marines, Sailors, retirees and eligible family members with quick assist loans, financial counseling and more. NMCRS also offers Budget for Baby classes to help military parents-to-be plan financially for new additions to the family. There are also society thrift shops in many locations.

For more information about the society and what it offers, please visit nmcrs.org.

Team Spirit Awards

USS Halsey (DDG 97)
USS O’Kane (DDG 77)
USS Michael Murphy (DDG 112)
USS William P. Lawrence (DDG 110)
USS Louisville (SSN 724)
USS Greeneville (SSN 772)
Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam
Naval Supply Systems Command Fleet
Logistics Center Pearl Harbor
Navy Exchange Hawaii

Most improved over previous year

Surface: USS John Paul Jones (DDG 53)
Submarine: USS Olympia (SSN 717)
Small Shore: Navy Environmental Preventive Medicine Unit 6
Large Shore: Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam

Second most improved over previous year

Surface: USS Halsey (DDG 97)
Submarine: USS Chicago (SSN 721)
Small Shore: Navy Munitions Command East Asia Division
Large Shore: Logistics Support Unit 3

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Category: News