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Monday, April 19, 2010

Zamboanga families receive generous clothing donation from U.S. service members

By Lt. Col. Tracey Saiki, Joint Special Operations Task Force-Philippines Public Affairs

ZAMBOANGA, Philippines – Soon after losing their homes from a fire, five Zamboanga families received two large boxes of generosity from the Joint Special Operations Task Force-Philippines chaplain’s office on April 13, 2010.

Within hours, the chaplain’s assistant, Staff Sgt. David Buell, packed infant to adult-sized clothing, toiletries and hygiene products, toys, and school supplies ready for pick-up.

“Doing things like this makes me feel so happy and gratified because this is part of my job - to help people,” said Buell, deployed here since January from Yokota Air Base, Japan. “We get donations from churches and our families back home who want to help families like these in need.”

“These families lost everything, which was very little,” said the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office representative from Zamboanga City. “We are very grateful for the JSOTF-P’s donation and to the people in the United States to help our Zamboanga families during such a difficult time,” she added.

The Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office was established in 1935 to assist the underprivileged Filipino population through government funded or charitable health and human services programs, and to assist in times of natural disasters or crises. PCSO has regional offices in major cities throughout the Republic of Philippines.

“Since I’ve been here, we’ve donated over 600 pounds of clothing and toys to local orphanages,” said Buell. “It was so gratifying seeing the children’s faces light up when you give them a ‘new’ shirt or something the play with.

The JSOTF-P command chaplain’s office frequently partners with the Armed Forces of the Philippines chaplain representatives and accompanies them at orphanages, schools, and places of worship in local communities.

At the request of the Philippine Government, JSOTF-P works together with the Armed Forces of the Philippines to fight terrorism and deliver humanitarian assistance to the people of Mindanao. 
U.S. forces are temporarily deployed to the Philippines in a strictly non-combat role to advise and assist the AFP, share information, and to conduct joint civil military operations. JSOTF-P is made up of Special Operations Forces and support personnel from all four branches of the U.S. military.

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1 comment:

  1. Awesome work SSgt Buell. It was a blessing in disguise working with you to gather and deliver these items the the Talon Talon Orphanage. You are one of the most memorable Chaplain Assistants I've ever worked with.

    Ch, Capt Brian K. Clouse