One of the cornerstones of the Coast Guard Foundation's mission is providing items for Coast Guard men and women around the country that aren't covered under federal budgeting through the Shipmate Fund. And the truth is that the Coast Guard is the least-funded branch of the military.
So far in 2014, the Coast Guard Foundation has given more than $420,000 for Shipmate projects, which help improve the lives of the brave men and women who serve our nation every day, protecting our coasts and waterways against terrorists. Sometimes we furnish basic equipment to help Coast Guard members do their jobs better, grow their skills and provide a safe, decent place to live for their families. The Coast Guard Foundation recently completed a playground at a base in Staten Island, New York with the help of Goldman Sachs employees, who volunteered their time and labor to get the project built in a day.
Employees from Goldman Sachs volunteered to build a Coast Guard Foundation funded playground at Sector New York, Staten Island in May.
Other times, we our aims are higher, like undertaking brick and mortar projects such as the bowling alley renovation project for Air Station Cape Cod, or the Windjammer community center rehabilitation at Sector St. Petersburg, Florida.
"One of the most rewarding parts of my job is matching donors with specific Shipmate projects," said Regional Director of Philanthropy, Brian Overcast. "The donors get a chance to meet the people they're helping, and enjoy knowing that 100% of their gift will directly benefit the men and women of the Coast Guard."
The Dyer family (left to right): Tatiana and Will Dyer, Harriet Dyer, John Dyer and David Dyer, with Coast Guard Foundation's regional director Brian Overcast and Coast Guard Foundation trustee VADM Sally Brice-O'Hara, USCG (Ret.). The gift from Dyer Chevrolet, Ft. Pierce Florida was presented July 2 to fund kayaks, stand-up paddleboards, and camping and fishing.
The Windjammer is a recreational building at the sector in need of major repairs, including a new roof, new heating/cooling systems, and interior renovations. The total cost of the project stands at $215,000, and the Foundation has already secured a lead gift of $50,000 from longtime supporters, David and Harriet Dyer, of Tampa.
Once completed, the Windjammer will benefit the more than 435 Coast Guard members who work at the sector offices. This project is a perfect example of how the Coast Guard Foundation makes a positive impact in the lives of those who wear the Coast Guard uniform.
The bowling alley at Air Station Cape Cod will have a similar effect on those stationed there. A large base, with more than 400 Coast Guard personnel assigned there, this project will revitalize a place for families to enjoy themselves, host birthday parties, and more.
We know our supporters understand the difficult – and often dangerous – conditions under which Coast Guard members work, and when you get right down to it, the only thing Coast Guard members are asking for is some basic equipment to help them do their jobs better, grow their skills and provide a safe, decent place to live for their families.