LAUREL BAY, S.C. - Marines from Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort and Marine Corps Recruit Depot Parris Island attended the MCAS Beaufort Volunteer Rally at the Laurel Bay Youth Center, Jan. 23.
More than 20 organizations recruited volunteers during the event, to include Habitat for Humanity, Carolina Hospice, Child Abuse Prevention Association, and more. The purpose of the event is to introduce service members to the multitude of volunteer opportunities available throughout the Lowcountry.
The Volunteer Rally also provided an increased interest in volunteering while providing organizations and service members with an opportunity to network and build professional relationships in the surrounding communities.
"Coming out to the Volunteer Rally really opened my eyes to the varying organizations and concerns that exist in the local community," said Lance Cpl. Joseph Charles, an administrative specialist with S-1 for Headquarters and Headquarters Squadron aboard the Air Station. "I have always wanted to learn about construction, but I never had the opportunity to study or work within the field. This event is exciting because I was able to sign up with Habitat for Humanity, and take my first steps toward working in construction. I am excited to help those in need of my help, while gaining experience and working alongside other volunteers."
All of the volunteer opportunities available will assist service members in obtaining credible experience in desired job fields. Many of the volunteering organizations will also write letters of appreciation and recommendation for Marines that volunteer with them.
Marines can also earn the Military Outstanding Volunteer Service Medal, through a wide variety of activities and volunteer duties such as Volunteer Emergency Services, soup kitchen work, volunteering at sporting events or fundraisers, and more.
Such volunteer service must be made in a sustained and direct nature towards the civilian community, must be significant in nature to produce tangible results, and must reflect favorably on the military service and the Department of Defense.
"By volunteering, the Marines have an opportunity to not only give back to others, but thank them for their continued support for the Tri-Command," said Lisa Montanez, the family readiness officer for H&HS. "This opportunity can open many doors for the service members and can provide them with the knowledge and experience to continue their success outside of the military."