Fort Leonard Wood’s annual Army Emergency Relief fundraising and awareness campaign has restarted and will run through the end of July.
This year marks the 78th anniversary of the Army’s non-profit relief organization, which has provided more than $2 billion to Soldiers, retirees and family members since 1942.
According to Fort Leonard Wood AER Officer Chuck Matthews, a variety of help is available to active-duty Soldiers, retirees and family members in times of need. These include expenses related to emergency travel, natural disaster preparation and evacuation, mortgages, rent and initial housing deposits, temporary lodging, food, healthcare not covered by Tricare, vehicle repairs, utilities, funerals, basic essential furniture, spousal relicensing or recertification, child care, appliance replacement, cranial helmets, permanent change of station travel, child car seats, dental care for dependents, minor home repairs, non-medical attendant travel, invitational travel orders, clothing, immigration and passport fees for dependents, and special needs medical equipment.
Matthews said to remember that all AER assistance has certain guidelines and restrictions that apply to the cost and situation and to contact the local AER office for more information about specific needs.
AER provided $795,732 in 657 loans and grants to Fort Leonard Wood Soldiers in 2019, as well as 122 educational scholarships worth $145,803 to 68 children and 54 spouses on post.
“That is $941,535 to the Fort Leonard Wood community, or $4.75 for every dollar donated to the campaign,” Matthews said.
Retired Lt. Gen. Raymond Mason, AER director, said ensuring every Soldier is fully informed on the programs and benefits of AER is important.
“The assistance we provide Soldiers in need is the primary focus,” Mason said. “AER’s zero-interest loans and grants help Soldiers when they face difficult financial situations.”
For more information on how to donate, call 573.596.2595 or 0212. To request AER assistance, call 573.596.3154.
(Editor’s note: Information for this article was provided by the Fort Leonard Wood AER office.)