By Gen. Mike Holmes, Commander, Air Combat Command, HQ Air Combat Command
/ Published April 12, 2018
Gen. Mike Holmes, commander of Air Combat Command and Chief Master Sgt. Frank A. Batten II, command chief of Air Combat Command, sign up for the 2018 Air Force Assistance Fund. Gen Holmes encouraged units to ensure personnel know about this year’s AFAF campaign and to look at ways to support ready Airmen and ready families. Since 1942, the AFAF campaign has been run by the Air Force family to help the Air Force family. U.S. Air Force Photo by A1C Anthony LeClerec NiN
If I offered to give you three dollars if you gave me one, you would probably take that deal.
Each year, the Air Force Assistance Fund extends a similar offer: contribute what you can, when you can, and the Fund will give all that and more back to Airmen and families when they need it most.
Last year, ACC Airmen, their spouses and their children received almost $2 million in grants and loans from the Air Force Aid Society to help cover costs for basic living or medical expenses, emergency travel or child care. Our Airmen received another $236,000 in grants to help them further their education.
In addition to the aid that flows to our force from AFAS, the Fund also provides dignity and care for the spouses of retired Airmen through the Lemay Foundation, the Air Force Villages Charitable Foundation and the Air Force Enlisted Village.
The ACC family received all that assistance even though ACC units and assigned Airmen pledged just $625,000 in 2017. This good work cannot continue without the generosity of our Airmen.
Of course, the AFAF campaign is not the only way to help Airmen and families. A host of charities and local programs have sprung up in recent years aimed at helping those who serve, in addition to the many other good causes that make claims on our time and money.
But as we look at ways to support ready Airmen and ready families, I encourage units to ensure personnel know about this year’s AFAF campaign. If you are able to contribute, give it some thought.
Since 1942, the AFAF campaign has been run by the Air Force family to help the Air Force family. Whether we are aware of it or not, each of us knows someone who has been helped by the Fund. Anything we can do today helps ensure that assistance will be available for other Airmen and other families when they need it tomorrow.