Combined Federal Campaign begins 9/21

| September 18, 2015 | 1 Comment

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Karen A. Iwamoto
Staff Writer

SCHOFIELD BARRACKS — For most, a dog offers companionship and loyalty. However, for Joy Nakata-Muranaka, who is blind, a seeing-eye dog named Laika also provides security and guidance.

“She makes travel safer, offers me independence and gives me added confidence that I can get (where I’m going),” Nakata-Muranaka said.

Laika was provided to her by Guide Dogs of Hawaii, one of hundreds of 501(c)(3) nonprofits that stand to benefit from donations to the 2015 Hawaii-Pacific Area Combined Federal Campaign.

The annual campaign, which is overseen by the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, is the only program authorized to solicit the federal workforce for charitable donations. It officially kicks off on Monday, Sept. 21, and wraps up on Nov. 20.

“The cost of one dog is $65,000,” said Roberta Auyoung, Guide Dogs of Hawaii program manager, explaining her organization’s need for donations. “But we’re not just guide dogs. We help the visually impaired get ahead with adaptive technology and aids (such as brail lights, special keyboards and currency identifiers), so that they can do work comparative to their sighted peers.”

Donors can select a specific charity – qualifying charities include familiar organizations such as Big Brothers and Sisters of Hawaii and Susan G. Komen Hawaii, as well as lesser-known organizations, such as Frank DeLima’s Student Enrichment Program and Cat Friends – or give an undesignated donation.

A number of charities, including Tripler Army Medical Center’s Fisher House, Blue Star Card and the United States Veterans Initiative, support the military community.

“It’s an opportunity to put your own money back into the community,” said Carissa Walker, U.S. Army Garrison-Hawaii operations and facilities manager, who is coordinating the CFC for USAG-HI. “At some point, everybody has used a service that they get to provide a donation for.”

Last year, the Hawaii-Pacific Area CFC raised more than $4 million for local charities; nationwide, the CFC campaign raised nearly $200 million in 2014, according to the CFC website.

While donations in the Hawaii-Pacific Area remain strong, the number of donors has decreased over the past five years, according to Lt. Scott Carr, public affairs officer for the U.S. Coast Guard, 14th District, which is the lead organization for the 2015 Hawaii-Pacific CFC.

“We really want to focus on getting more people to participate,” Carr said. “It’s part of the military lifestyle to give back and be good stewards. It’s important to the relationship the military has with this community.”

As part of the effort to generate more participation, he encouraged federal employees to make their donations online.

“It’s easier,” he said. “Plus, it keeps the administrative costs down so that more of the money goes to the charities.”

Online donations can be made through Employee Express (for specified civilian agencies), CFC Nexus (for military and civilian agencies) and MyPay (for those paid through DAF) by visiting the Hawaii-Pacific Area CFC website.


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CFC Mission

Its mission is to promote and support philanthropy through a program that is employee-focused, cost-efficient and effective in providing all federal employees the opportunity to improve the quality of life for all.

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  1. Mike Brooks says:

    I was able to trace the actual money from my donation to a local charity. CFC took 15% off the top, then United Way took their 15% overhead then the local distribution intermediary took another 15%. The actual charity only received 61 cents on the dollar from my donation. After that revelation, I only gave to the intended charities directly. The overhead listed in the CFC booklets only relates to the specific charity and not the overhead between CFC and the actual charity.

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