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CALIFORNIA POST SAYS 'THANK YOU FOR YOUR SERVICE'

Post 233 in Beaumont helps military families make ends meet.

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Members of VFW Post 233 in Beaumont, Calif., were looking for a new way to help military families when Anita Neu-Fultz, the Executive Director of the ASYMCA of Twentynine Palms Marine Corps Base, came to a Post meeting.

ASYMCA collects donations from the community and distributes them to military families every Thursday. It's a program they call “Thank You For Your Service.”

The Post members liked what they heard and made their first delivery of donated goods a few weeks later. The operation made such a profound impression that they decided, right then and there, to keep going back.

“As we witness the smiles and the appreciation on the faces of these families, we are motivated to do even more to support this program,” said Ernie Hernandez, Post 233 Public Relations Officer.

Since the first delivery, there has been an overwhelming response from the Post members, local organizations—including Boy Scout Troop 78, the Protestant Chapel on base and a local Deca Commissary—and the community at large. Donations began pouring in. Food. Appliances. Furniture. Clothes. Even money.

Every Thursday, families line up outside the ASYMCA, eager for a helping hand.

“The families are always so appreciative,” said Hernandez. “They can’t believe that complete strangers care enough to help them make ends meet. It not only alleviates their financial strain—it restores their faith in humanity.”

Post 233 now makes deliveries to the ASYMCA at least four times a month. In a recent drive, the Post collected formal gowns for military spouses attending the Marine Corp Ball.

“We hear the needs of these families, and we do what it takes to meet them,” said Hernandez.

As one former recipient, James Cavanaugh, said, “I would like to extend my greatest appreciation. You have helped me through some tough times. Sometimes just having food on the table is a morale booster.”

Hernandez and his fellow Post members are looking forward to a long relationship with ASYMCA.

“Our Post will continue to support ASYMCA and, if needed, will procure additional storage facilities and delivery vehicles to make sure these deliveries continue well into the future,” Hernandez concluded.

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