Hanscom Air Force Base   Right Corner Banner
Join the Air Force

News > Volunteers help tornado victims
Volunteers help tornado victims

Posted 7/21/2011   Updated 7/21/2011 Email story   Print story

    

7/21/2011 - HANSCOM AIR FORCE BASE, Mass. -- Members of the National Federation of Federal Employees (NFFE), Local 1384, at Hanscom recently gave up a vacation day to carpool to Springfield, Mass. Their mission was to volunteer at the Salvation Army center there, helping to distribute food and other items to those left homeless by the recent tornado.

Earlier in June, a tornado swept a path of destruction from Springfield to Sturbridge. Tornados in Massachusetts are very rare, the last one hitting central sections of the state decades ago. This storm ripped Springfield in half and its path was highlighted on a large, detailed street map centrally displayed at the center.

"When we took a lunch break and drove down to Main Street, we were dismayed to see the rubble of what used to be multi-storied brick buildings," said NFFE Local 1384 President Irene Gorczyca. "A National Guard presence was also noticeable."

With the immediate disaster relief efforts accomplished, the Salvation Army was concentrating on providing the day-to-day necessities to those who were still living in shelters or the homes of friends and family members.

The NFFE volunteers worked under the direction of Maj. Tom Perks, Springfield Salvation Army commander, where they moved boxes of items into storage, pulled food items to fill orders for families waiting in adjacent rooms, inspected and discarded food items with expired dates, organized the contents of items donated in an assortment of boxes and bags, restocked the pantry items and sorted through pallets of items dropped off by a food chain store.

"When you see the devastation from a natural disaster such as a tornado, and see the victims coming to the Salvation Army for supplies, it feels good that there is something we can do to help," said Greg MacDonnell, from the C2ISR Directorate, who volunteered for the day.

The one task that other volunteer groups had not done was separating the large bins of baby food jars into age-appropriate containers.

"We looked at the bins, looked at each other and had that task done in about an hour," said Ms. Gorczyca.

The NFFE volunteers also undertook this mission for a more subtle reason: to demonstrate to the public that federal employees are a little noticed, but essential, part of the community fabric, said Ms. Gorczyca. Each volunteer wore a badge that clearly identified them by name and as members of NFFE, located at Hanscom.

According to Ms Gorczyca, public opinion of government employees is at an all-time low and only rolling up the sleeves by everyone in federal, state and local public service can reverse this opinion.

NFFE, Local 1384, represents the professional employees at Hanscom. The local chapter is organizing another trip to Springfield in August. Anyone interested in participating should contact the union office at 781-377-2947.



tabComments
No comments yet.  
Add a comment

 Inside Hanscom AFB

ima cornerSearch

tabMission NewsRSS feed 
James, Baker, Tsongas talk innovation

Interaction highlight of Innovation Exchange

Dennis takes leadership of C3I and Networks

Olson looks at past, to future following 34-year AF career

Hanscom cyber initiatives: ISN/IPN Pathfinder program moves to consolidate data centers

tabHanscom NewsRSS feed 
Rice confirmed as ANG director

May promotions announced

AFMC command chief reflects on 30-year career

Acquisition military deputy to speak at CSAF scholarship dinner

Hanscom community gathers to honor, highlight Tuskegee Airmen  |  VIDEO

ABG announces quarterly award winners

SFS hosts Drug Take-Back event this weekend

Ceremony marks completion of 2-year modernization project  |  VIDEO

SecAF to participate in innovation forum

Health expo scheduled April 27

tabNews Briefs and HappeningsRSS feed 
Upcoming events

News in Brief

School Notes  1

tabCommentaryRSS feed 
Antiterrorism measures

National PrepareAthon Day! is April 30

What to do when reveille, retreat and taps is played on base

tabPhoto FeatureRSS feed 
Photo feature: This week at Hanscom, April 29

Photo feature: This week at Hanscom, April 22

tabFeaturesRSS feed 
Laying the foundation for future AF, Coast Guard enlisted leaders

Command chief focused on mission, careers of Airmen

From Army Air Corps to U.S. Air Force, 71-years and counting


Site Map      Contact Us     Questions     USA.gov     Security and Privacy notice     E-publishing  
Suicide Prevention    SAPR   IG   EEO   Accessibility/Section 508   No FEAR Act