USAG Wiesbaden Public Affairs
U.S. Army Garrison Wiesbaden kicked off the 2019 Army Emergency Relief campaign during a breakfast Feb. 28 at the Strong Europe Café dining facility.
USAG Wiesbaden Senior Responsible Officer Brig. Gen. Ellen Clark, Commander Col. Noah Cloud and AER Chief Financial Officer retired Lt. Col. Joel Levesque stressed the importance of Soldiers helping Soldiers through AER, which has been operating for 77 years.
“In those 77 years, a lot has changed,” Clark said. “But one thing that has not changed is that AER is a great way to aid your battle buddies in time of need. The Army is a Family, and through AER we can help take care of each other.”
AER provides interest-free loans, grants and scholarships for Soldiers, retired Soldiers and their Families. It helps pay for things such as emergency travel, health care expenses, food, rent or mortgage, minor home repairs and other expenses.
Cloud said what stands out to him most about AER is the efficiency of the program. “The vast majority of the resources go straight to the Soldiers,” he said.
AER gives Soldiers an opportunity to resolve a problem without getting themselves into insurmountable debt, said Federica LeMauk, USAG Wiesbaden AER officer.
“Our number one priority is readiness,” Clark said, “And AER can help when Soldiers need it, allowing them to focus on their missions.”
The goal of the kickoff breakfast was to raise awareness of the program, Levesque said. “We help 99 percent of the people that come to see us… Our motto is ‘Soldiers helping Soldiers.’
“One of the wonderful things about this is that it’s a commander’s tool,” he said. “Company commanders can actually give a no-interest loan up to $2,000 if they perceive a valid need.”
A 5k run is planned for 6 a.m. April 26 at the fitness center and a golf tournament is planned for May 17 at the Rheinblick Golf Course. Follow the garrison on Facebook, visit the garrison website, home.army.mil/wiesbaden, and read next month’s Herald Union for details.
This year’s campaign ends May 17. Visit www.aerhq.org for more information on AER eligibility and programs, or stop by ACS and talk to LeMauk.