Day of Caring, 250 strong
By Airman 1st Class Magen M. Reeves, 341st Missile Wing Public Affairs
/ Published October 23, 2015
MALMSTROM AIR FORCE BASE, MONT. -- On Oct. 23, Airmen from Malmstrom Air Force Base, as well as other federal employees from the local area, gathered in Great Falls for the Day of Caring.
The Day of Caring is an annual volunteer opportunity for individuals to help local community members with household chores, such as raking leaves, washing windows, trimming trees and changing lightbulbs. This year volunteers installed smoke detectors as well.
A portion of the local population to include the elderly, lower income households and the physically disabled, are unable to perform many of these tasks on their own and look forward to the Day of Caring every year.
This is the first year that the Day of Caring, which is led by the United Way and the Combined Federal Campaign, has had the opportunity to partner up with the American Red Cross.
"This year we are trying to install smoke detectors in as many homes as possible," said Master Sgt. Treva Sahadat, 341st Mission Support Group point of contact. "We had 68 homes sign up just today. But since we have so many volunteers this year, we are going to canvas the area (go door-to-door) to increase the number of installations."
The purpose of installing the detectors is to contribute to fire prevention efforts.
"We're basically installing fire alarms to help keep the neighborhood safe," said Martinez. The community's population is almost 68,000 people, said Martinez.
The event is important to the community because the efforts of the volunteers keep the community safe, which is why it is critical to have as many hands willing to help as possible.
This year marks the largest number of volunteers to participate in the Day of Caring.
"This year we have the most volunteers that we've ever had," said Master Sgt. Jesse Martinez, 341st Maintenance Group point of contact. "We have about 248 volunteers this year with about 100 members from MXG and 100 from MSG."
Because of the increase in numbers, coordinators were able to amp up the teams from three to five individuals. With those numbers, one person was able to educate the recipients on the smoke detection systems, two performed installations and two went door-to-door to try to cover more homes.
The Day of Caring was a massive success.
A total of 300 homes were visited where household chores were performed, with 250 of those homes receiving smoke alarm maintenance and installation.
"It's good to get our faces downtown by getting the help from the base to help those in need," said Martinez.
As a volunteer opportunity, beneficiaries are able to have services done by Airmen and friends more than willing to lend a helping hand.
"The community looks to the base to volunteer because we're a strong presence," said Sahadat.
Sahadat decided to become involved in the event when she heard about the Day of Caring.
"The Day of Caring title grabbed me," said Sahadat. "I like taking care of people."
The Day of Caring is a part of the CFC, one of the few fundraising associations that the Air Force is able to support. Every year, Team Malmstrom members make countless donations and provide hundreds of hours of volunteer work to support quality of life programs.