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    JEDI provides COVID-19 relief to the force



    Story by Airman Amanda Lovelace 

    50th Space Wing Public Affairs

    COVID-19 quarantine created many new challenges for families who were unable to leave their homes, so in an effort to relieve some of those challenges, a Schriever Airman jumped to action and created the Joint Effort Delivery Initiative program.

    Capt. Ronald Nguyen, 50th Space Wing Safety Office chief of safety, created JEDI after realizing Schriever teammates would need assistance.

    “When COVID-19 started to affect our base, I immediately thought about people who were under quarantine,” Nguyen said. “I asked [Maj. Justin Gabbard, 50th Comptroller Squadron commander] about services offered to our Airmen and he said [none were in place], but I could start one.”

    The idea for JEDI was immediately streamlined from Gabbard and approved by the Crisis Action Team within 24 hours.

    “It was a very easy process and I appreciate the support that senior leaders have been providing,” Nguyen said. “The motivation came from a caring and empathetic standpoint. While there were services that offered grocery deliveries, they were inundated and couldn’t be filled immediately. So, I offered a more personal solution.”

    JEDI was initially created to provide essential supplies such as groceries, meals and personal hygiene items to personnel who were in mandated quarantine.

    “This program was also used to assist single parents unable to go out, dorm Airmen who had no means of transportation and individuals who are at high risk to COVID-19,” said Tech. Sgt. Michael Jones, 50th Space Wing Inspector General’s Office wing exercise section chief and JEDI volunteer. “We handled their shopping to mitigate putting them at risk. Anyone could use the JEDI program.”

    Through shopping and persistence, JEDI volunteers were able to fulfill all requests[TJLGUA5SS1], so members who utilized their services received everything they needed.

    After a request from senior leaders, the program morphed into a delivery initiative for Airmen working on base as well. Through the donations of companies such as the USO, Soldier’s Angels and the Gary Sinise Foundation, JEDI volunteers were able to get an assortment of snacks and meals for Airmen.

    “Overall, we’ve delivered over $15,000 in donations to various organizations and tenant units at Schriever,” Nguyen said. “Additionally, we were able to [deliver grocery requests] to a total of six families throughout the last few weeks. The amount of people willing to help has been tremendous. It’s amazing how many people step up during a crisis.”

    Additionally, the JEDI program is completely confidential; the names of those who utilize its services will never be released.

    “Being in the JEDI program showed me how the simple things in life can be taken for granted,” Jones said. “I was glad to be a part of something that could take the stress off someone’s shoulders that didn’t have the luxury of doing normal, day-to-day errands. It made me feel good to show up to mission-essential work centers here at Schriever and hand out food or gift cards to those at work. It really made me appreciate how the community of Colorado Springs and Schriever really came together.”

    To submit a request, email Nguyen at For those who wish to remain anonymous, requests can be submitted through this link:

    Requested items must be paid digitally. After confirmed receipt, purchases will be made. Change will be refunded to the requestor via mobile payment services. Contact Nguyen for payment process information.

    Due to a possible shortage of supplies, money will be refunded if the item can’t be purchased. Additionally, the requestor must make the best estimate for pricing. If additional funds are required, the lead JEDI volunteer will contact the requestor. Receipts will be provided and logged.

    “After that, it’s as easy as going to the store and shopping for their supplies,” Nguyen said. “Once the essentials are bought, they’re wiped down before being dropped on the requestor’s doorstep."



    Date Taken: 05.08.2020
    Date Posted: 05.18.2020 10:02
    Story ID: 370200

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