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October 11, 2012

Signalers donate, raise awareness of Chaplain’s Food Locker

Soldiers from Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 11th Theater Tactical Signal Brigade, organized outside the commissary for several hours Oct. 1 to collect donations in support of the Chaplain’s Food Locker here.

“There was a good turnout from the community,” said Sgt. Jason Godfrey, Basic Splicer School, 11th TTSB. “A lot of people came out to support us and helped generate 28 cartfuls of donations.”

Godfrey is no stranger to the food locker and has seen how it can help Soldiers out first-hand.

“Two years ago we had a Soldier in need. I took her down to the warehouse to get some groceries, and they were low at the time,” said Godfrey. “Because they had so little food, we decided to have a food drive for them, and now do that two or three times a year.”

There are a lot of programs and services in place to help Soldiers in time of need, and this is one of the big ones. Even though it is extremely helpful there are many people who are unaware of what it is and how it works.

“The Chaplain’s Food Locker is an activity we do for Soldiers who are in need and may be having financial challenges,” said Capt. Shelby Grant, chaplain, 11th TTSB. “We collect for the needy Families.”

“This warehouse of goods is here to benefit Soldiers regardless of rank,” said Sgt. Dennis Jones, chaplain’s assistant, 11th TTSB. “We also have pet food, toiletries, diapers and other common items a Soldier may require. The food locker is a one-stop location for Families in need.”

All that is required for Soldiers to benefit from this program is to fill out an application they can get from their installation, brigade or battalion chaplain. Once it is completed, they can drop it off at their respective chaplain’s office. Once it is reviewed, the Soldier is taken to the warehouse where they can get the items they need for their Family.

Depending on the Soldier’s financial limitations and the non-availability of vital items they may need that are absent from the warehouse, the Soldier may receive added assistance.

Not only do they receive food and items from the warehouse but depending on their finances, a Soldier may also receive a gift certificate for Fry’s grocery store or the commissary, said Jones. They can use it to get things not available at the food locker.

The food locker is open all year around, and the holiday season is when it receives a large spike in donations. Donations can be dropped off at the installation chaplain’s office, main post chapel or designated unit chaplain.

The donations received are a testament to the generosity and support the Fort Huachuca community gives to its own.

The community was very helpful and friendly, said Cpl. Larry Barner, Basic Splicer School, 11th TTSB. In the end, people were still in line at the commissary waiting to get and drop off donations. The food drive was a success and a help for the food locker.

As long as there are Soldiers in need the Army will have programs like the Chaplain’s Food Locker to help them and their Families. There will also be Soldiers willing to give up their time to support things like this in order to raise items, food and awareness for these charities.

“Anytime we can go out and help the community and do something positive, then I am all for it,” said Barner.




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