Volunteer community support; how much do you or does your organization support it?

AFRAS Silver Award Ceremony 9-16 Volunteer

[L-R] Wayne Spivak, VP Association for Rescue at Sea (AFRAS), MCPOCG Charles “Skip” Bowen, USCG (ret.), President of AFRAS, Dana Goward, SES (ret.) USCG, Chairman of AFRAS, Mr. Patrick Porter, USCG Auxiliary, Silver Award Winner, his spouse Mr. Virgil Campbell, USCG Auxiliary, ADM Chuck Michel, USCG Vice Commandant of the USCG, second row obscured: Congressman Ralph Abraham, MD (R-LA), Congressman Duncan Hunter (R-CA) Chair of the Coast Guard and Marine Transportation Subcommittee partially blocked volunteer

Heroism and the Volunteer

On Wednesday Sept 21st, I had the privilege of being the Master of Ceremonies at an event on Capitol Hill.  This is the annual event held by the Association for Rescue at Sea.  In attendance were industry representatives, and members of Congress.  Also in attending was a broad section of the USCG Flags and other Coast Guard leadership, along with staff members. volunteer

The organization, Association for Rescue at Sea (www.afras.org), recognizes heroism in the maritime community.  They also raise money for voluntary coast guards worldwide.

The Silver Award (one of several different awards presented that evening) is given to a US Coast Guard Auxiliarist.  The volunteer Coast Guard Auxiliarist must have saved a life at sea (or in this case a river). Mr. Porter actually saved two lives at different times during the day.  This feat was accomplished at the Bullhead Regatta, held on the Colorado River in August 2015 near Bullhead, AZ.

This year we donated in excess of $50,000 to organizations in the Caribbean Basin, Tanzania and to the volunteer Coast Guard organizations involved in the Mediterranean/Aegean crisis.

The members of AFRAS work for a wide variety of businesses or are retired (mostly from the Coast Guard). They are able to arrange their business duties around their volunteerism and yield what we feel are positive results for our community, nation and the world.

Does your organization foster the spirit of giving back the the community/country? And if it does, what do you do for your employees and/or those organizations?