Editor’s Note: The below information was provided by Gladys Jenkins, Fort Lee AER manager.

AER is a private, nonprofit organization dedicated solely to “Helping the Army Take Care of its Own.” It has been the Army’s emergency financial assistance organization since Feb. 5, 1942. This is the 65th year of AER operations.

Eligibility for AER emergency financial assistance is limited to:

• Soldiers on extended Active Duty and their eligible family members (enrolled in DEERS).

• Soldiers who retired from Active Duty for longevity or by reason of physical disability or upon attaining age 60 (Reserve components) and their eligible family members. Army members of Reserve components (U.S. Army Reserve and Army National Guard) on continuous Active Duty for a period in excess of 30 continuous days and their eligible family members.

AER financial assistance is available when:

• Soldiers and their eligible family members have a valid emergency financial need.

• Retirees, widower(s) and orphans of deceased Soldiers have an emergency need.

• AER emergency financial assistance is available wherever Soldiers may be-primary outlets are the 100 AER Sections at Army installations world-wide.

AER assistance may also be obtained through more then 1,800 locations around the world.

• Any American Red Cross Chapter.

• Any Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society Auxiliary

• Any Air Force Aid Society Section

• Any Coast Guard Mutual Assistance Office

AER emergency financial assistance is provided as a:

• Interest-free loan with deferred repayment, if needed, up to a year or longer.

• Grant, when there’s an inability to repay assistance after financial readiness and deferment of loan.

• Combination loan and grant.

Sources of funds to sustain AER’s financial assistance are:

• Loan repayments

• Annual AER Fund campaign

• Unsolicited contributions

• Investment income

• AER doesn’t receive any appropriated government money. Eighty-eight cents of every dollar contributed is used to help Soldiers.

For campaign information, contact individual unit campaign keypersons or the AER campaign office at (804) 734-3381 or 734-7954. Updated information is also available on the AER Web site: www.aerhq.org