Dover Air Force Base – The USO’s mission is to strengthen America’s military service members by keeping them connected to family, home, and country, throughout their service to the nation. But the USO is not able to do this without the dedication and service from its countless volunteers.
USO Delaware is in need of volunteers to bolster its numbers. Anyone and everyone can volunteer, including current active duty and Reserve military members.
“We need a ton of volunteers,” said Bill Flanders, USO Delaware center operations supervisor. “We need volunteers for our center on base and for our special events.”
According to Yolanda Bottorf, USO Delaware program operations manager, those who wish to volunteer at the USO center, which is located on base in the Passenger Terminal, can expect their duties to include keeping the center open by maintaining all of the amenities that are available for service members and their families.
USO Delaware also offers a wide range of programs outside of the center.
“We always have special events that go on from fundraising to outreach to service members,” said Bottorf. “We are always looking for different ways to keep service members involved; boosting morale.”
If you are interested in volunteering with the USO, please fill out an online application at www.volunteers.uso.org. All applications are processed through this site.
“We don’t require a certain amount of hours per month,” said Flanders. “We understand people’s schedules.”
Typically, the USO center needs four volunteers per shift.
“There are shifts to fit every schedule,” said Trisha Knack, wife of Col. Tyler Knack, 436th Maintenance Group commander.
Knack has been volunteering at the USO center on base since her family moved to Dover AFB last summer.
“We’ve visited a lot of USOs across the country and overseas as we’ve traveled and PCS’d (Permanent Change of Station),” said Knack. “It was a blessing to our family. When we moved here, I wanted to jump in and get involved by volunteering.”
Another volunteer, Capt. Martin Gakuria, 436th Aerospace Medicine Squadron bioenvironmental engineering occupational and environmental health element chief, has supported USO Delaware since 2014.
“I am always surprised when I hear there are Dover AFB service members who has not visited the Dover AFB USO,” said Gakuria. “You get to see a different perspective of the world from regular visitors. You get to meet an amazing management team. You also get to enjoy what you are doing by learning something new every time you volunteer, and the most important part of it all is that you get a chance to take care of your fellow service members, to include families. Every Service Member who we serve at the USO always leaves with a smile and that emboldens the USO mission.”
Knack, Gakuria and countless others are part of a team of more than 30,000 volunteers worldwide who have continued the 75-year legacy of the USO and its mission.
“It’s not just Dover,” said Flanders. “USO Delaware takes care of every branch of service, from the Reserve Marine unit up north, all the way down to the Coast Guard at Indian River.”
The hours of operation for USO center on Dover AFB have changed and is now Monday through Thursday, 7:30 a.m. to 10 p.m., Friday and Saturday, 7:30 a.m. to midnight, and Sunday, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Furthermore, stay up to date with ongoing and upcoming events with USO Delaware at www.delaware.uso.org, the USO Facebook page at www.facebook.com/USO-Delaware, or the My Military Communities Mobile Application (MyMC2) on your smartphone.
Source: Dover Air Force Base
Image Credits: Senior Airman Zachary Cacicia