Commentary | July 15, 2021

Bravo Zulu: Coast Guard employees demonstrated a spirit of giving through the Feds Feed Families program, and more

By MyCG Staff

Coast Guard employees demonstrated a spirit of giving through the Feds Feed Families program on June 29. Thank you to the eight members of the Coast Guard who participated. Feds Feed Families is an annual government-wide campaign which encourages employees from all federal departments and agencies to give in-kind contributions—food, services, and time—to food banks and pantries. Members from a variety of directorates and commands at U.S. Coast Guard Headquarters donated their time at Bread for the City’s Southeast D.C., location. Bread for the City is an organization that provides food, clothing, medical care, and legal and social services to low-income individuals. Normally the volunteers would have been sorting food. However, that section of Bread for the City was down for the day, so the volunteers sorted clothing, which will be made available for free to the needy. “It’s important for the Coast Guard members to take the opportunity to give back to the community when we can,” said Lt. Christopher Reimer, Feds Feed Families U.S. Coast Guard Headquarters project officer. “Bread for the City, SE is located in downtown Anacostia—a stone’s throw away from headquarters. Building relationships with our community builds trust and support for our service.” Coast Guard employees can get involved at Feds Feed Families-Get Involved. There you can find local food banks where you can volunteer and donate. If you want to volunteer for Bread for the City, you can learn more by going online to Volunteer–Bread for the City. For more information, contact Lt. Christopher Reimer at 202-372-1396. 

The “Coast Guard Lady” chosen as the 2021 Spirit of Hope Award recipient. Congratulations to Lois Bouton (affectionately known as the “Coast Guard Lady”) for being selected as the 2021 Spirit of Hope Award winner. The Spirit of Hope Award is named in honor of Bob Hope and is presented for outstanding service to the United States of America. It is awarded to men and women of the United Stated Armed Forces, entertainers, and other distinguished Americans and organizations whose patriotism and service epitomize the values of Bob Hope (courage, honor, duty, commitment, integrity, and selfless dedication) and significantly enhance the quality of life of service members and their families serving around the world. The Spirit of Hope Award recognizes people who selflessly contribute an extraordinary amount of time, talent or resources to benefit members of the United States Armed Forces. As a WWII SPAR, Bouton inspired generations with her sacrifice and dedication to our country. Throughout the past 50 years, she personally wrote over 100,000 messages of support in the form of letters and cards to members across the entire Coast Guard. She lifted the spirits of an entire generation of Coast Guard members. She is now a centenarian and has donated hundreds of Coast Guard-related items to the U.S. Coast Guard Historian's Office in order to continue her legacy to the service. There will be an awards ceremony held at the Pentagon honoring awardees from every branch. Please direct questions should be emailed to Gwenda Bradford, or 202-372-4625. See Selection of Coast Guard Winner of 2021 Spirit of Hope Award ALCOAST 248/21 for more information.

Solicitation for 2022 Coast Guard Reserve Awards Panel. The Coast Guard Reserve Awards Panel is seeking volunteers. As members of the panel, the volunteers will influence the selection of recipients for the annual Coast Guard Reserve awards and scholarships. The panel consists of one captain to serve as president, six members, and one alternate. The alternate will serve as a voting member in the event a quorum cannot be reached. The panel will convene multiple times during the year based on 
the submission schedules for each award or scholarship. The panel will meet virtually. Interested applicants should submit a memorandum no more than one page long. You can get specific details by reading the Solicitation for FY22 Coast Guard Reserve Awards Panel ALCOAST 249/21.

Solicitation for new Shipmate Fund items. Special thanks go out to the Coast Guard Foundation (CGF) and its Shipmate Fund (SMF) for providing units with necessary fitness, morale, and recreational equipment that has greatly improved the quality of life for personnel and their families. The CGF now seeks requests from units in need of such equipment. Requests are limited to items not considered critical to Coast Guard operations or support. If a unit has previously submitted a request, it will need to resubmit one. Requested items must value between $1,000.00-$25,000.00. The maximum number of requests an individual unit may submit is limited to two. Submissions are due by Sept. 1, 2021. For more information on the specific types of items that will be considered and details on how to make requests, read Coast Guard Foundation 2021-2022 Shipmate Fund Solicitation Message ALCOAST 246/21.