MARINE CORPS AIR STATION BEAUFORT, S.C. -- Originating in 1904 as the Navy Relief Society, the organization now known as the Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society continues to assist Marines and sailors worldwide in times of need.
Despite the fact that NMCRS operates nearly 250 offices ashore and afloat at Navy and Marine Corps installations throughout the world, the mission remains the same: ensuring that Marines and sailors are given the needed support to overcome unexpected obstacles.
“We provide financial assistance to eligible recipients in the form of interest-free loans and grants to meet emergency needs, such as car repairs, medical bills and other similar situations,” said Pam Mentzer, the Air Station’s NMCRS director.
To help with the collection of donations for NMCRS, the Air Station is holding an annual fund drive during the month of March. This is an opportunity for active duty service members to donate money to those in need.
“There are no major events planned yet, but unit representatives will brief Marines and sailors about how to get involved with the Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society,” said 2nd Lt. Rosella Iaccino, the Air Station’s fund drive coordinator.
Last year the Air Station raised $40,000, according to Iaccino. Though there is no set goal for the total amount of money raised, the drive has another mission.
“Our main goal this year is to have 100 percent contact with every Marine and sailor,” Iaccino said. “We need to get out to as many places as we can to get the word out and show our service members what (the Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society) can do for them.”
Although the fund drive is attempting to reach every service member aboard Fightertown, it does not expect Marines and sailors to donate large amounts.
“The NMCRS puts every dollar received toward aiding Marines and sailors,” Iaccino said. “We’re not asking a lot. Marines and sailors can do monthly allotments of $4 to $7, or donate as much as they feel they can.”
According to Mentzer, the Air Station’s NMCRS building receives visits from Marines and sailors applying for aid almost every day.
“Donating to the Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society is always a good thing,” Iaccino said. “It’s a great opportunity to give back to the Navy and Marine Corps. Also, it’s a way to make sure Marines, sailors and their families are taken care of, especially for deployed Marines and sailors.”
With the hectic schedules of Marines and sailors, it’s hard to locate each and every Marine, Iaccino explained.
“If someone hasn’t approached you, seek out the unit representative,” said Iaccino. “Every unit and sub-unit has someone who has knowledge and will work with the fund drive.We will have the opportunity for everyone who wants to donate to do so and I urge everyone to try to donate.”
Service members can donate to the fund with allotments, check or cash donations. All proceeds can be submitted to unit representatives. For more information on the NMCRS, call Pam Mentzer at 228-7357 or visit the NMCRS Building 719, located in front of Fightertown Fitness Center.