I dove headfirst into Department of Defense and Army Regulations as well as Joint Ethics laws when I began working as a Family Readiness Support Assistant. I was surprised and disheartened to discover how severely restricted fiscal activities, particularly fund raising, had become for Family Readiness Groups. FRGs were not only severely restricted but also have no way to ask for help.
Family Readiness Groups are only allowed to raise funds from within their military community. They must compete against each other for prime fund raising opportunities and there is always paperwork involved. Frequently the process is so frustrating that many FRGs make the decision not to fundraise in the military community.
This leaves FRGs with one community in which to fund raise: their unit. How demoralizing to have to raise funds from the people you are serving in order to provide decent morale–boosting activities. A vicious circle; selling blankets, baked goods, jewelry, cups, candy grams...anything to interest the men and women to spend money. So much work for so very little reward.
Then something amazing happened. Something that has brought hope, vitality, and a much-needed moral boost to the men and women here. The unit was approached by a benevolent organization (Lead The Way Fund, Inc.) that wanted to assist the men and their families. After many legal reviews and meetings, support for the FRGs began to arrive.
Many FRG’s were hesitant to use the resources at first. With guidance, encouragement and assurance, FRGs began to make plans. The FRGs were and are able to plan events such as trips to the zoo, outings for spouses during deployments, trips to soccer and baseball games, many holiday events, welcome home celebrations, volunteer appreciation, and so much more.
I cannot fully convey the importance of these activities in a letter or article. I will tell you that, without the opportunities that are now available, life for families would be much harder. Morale would drop drastically. I wish that you could see the comfort and relief that Lead The Way Fund, Inc. support provides to FRGs and leadership, as I do.
Lead The Way Fund, Inc. support is invaluable to the health of the unit and its families. Their efforts and their desire to serve our nation’s heroes reflect greatly upon them. I thank them from the deepest parts of my being for their unwavering support to the men and women of 2d Ranger Battalion.
Rangers Lead The Way!
-2/75 Family Readiness Assistant