Honor Guard sponsors 29th annual Holiday Cheer for Children

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Katherine Windish
  • 11th Wing Public Affairs
The United States Air Force Honor Guard sponsored the 29th annual Holiday Cheer for Children campaign this holiday season.

Holiday Cheer is a program founded by the Honor Guard 29 years ago to collect toys and monetary donations for less fortunate families in the National Capital Region.

Thirty-seven Honor Guard volunteers manned donation boxes for 95 hours at the base exchange, shoppette and the Daughters of the American Revolution Constitution Hall. Volunteers raised $6,465, plus $1,350 worth of toys that benefited 27 military and 15 civilian families, providing for 114 children, and donations to three local charities.

"The Honor Guard as a whole has a really awesome volunteer spirit," said Staff Sgt. Christopher Cenatiempo, program volunteer. "When I went around the squadron asking for volunteers there were tons of people who were more than willing to help out."

After donations were collected, a makeshift toy store was set up and organized by age and gender for parents to be able to choose free toys for their children.

"It's a great program to be a part of," said Sergeant Cenatiempo, the point of contact for the program. "While the usual monetary donation that most foundations give is very important, this program focuses on the children and making their Christmas memorable. Toys are what makes Christmas special for little kids."