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Environmental Factor, October 2015

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NIEHS launches 2015 charity drive

By Ian Thomas

Linda Birnbaum

Birnbaum thanked donors, past, present, and future, for their generosity. (Photo courtesy of Steve McCaw)

Kathy Bull

“Supporting USO-NC is not only changing a life, but saving a life,” said Kathy Bull, development director for USO of North Carolina, as she detailed some of the many ways USO supports U.S. servicewomen and servicemen. (Photo courtesy of Steve McCaw)

On Sept. 18, NIEHS launched its annual charity drive, known as the Combined Federal Campaign (CFC). Centered on the theme, “You Can Change a Life,” this year’s campaign started in style with a well-attended event and a morning-long bake sale with tasty treats for attendees.

“The CFC is our chance to band together as federal workers in support of those that support our local community,” said Mark Miller, Ph.D., who is co-chairing this year’s drive along with NIEHS colleagues Debbie Wales and Mary Jacobson.

All proceeds from the bake sale went toward this year’s overall fundraising goal of $116,000 in charitable pledges by Dec. 1.

A legacy of caring

Founded in 1961, the mission of the CFC has been to promote and support philanthropy through a program that is employee-focused, cost-efficient, and effective in providing all federal employees the chance to help improve life for all.

“Since its inception more than fifty years ago, CFC has evolved into the leading employee giving program in the country,” said NIEHS and National Toxicology Program Director Linda Birnbaum, Ph.D. “In that time, federal employees have donated more than $193 million to charities across the nation — $1.3 million of that right here at home through CFC of North Carolina.”

Today, donors can pledge to more than 24,000 charities nationwide. Some love the range of options; Birnbaum considers it awe-inspiring. “We host dozens of charities on our campus every year through events like Fall Fest,” Birnbaum said, referring to the first in a series of upcoming events (see sidebar). “Those are priceless opportunities because they put us face-to-face with the causes we’re supporting. If you’re unsure where to give, that’s a great way to narrow down your choices.”

The two charities present at this year’s kickoff were Durham-based Independent Animal Rescue (IAR) and the United Service Organizations of North Carolina (USO-NC) (USO-NC).

More information on giving to CFC is available from the Greater North Carolina Area CFC.

(Ian Thomas is a public affairs specialist with the NIEHS Office of Communications and Public Liaison and a regular contributor to the Environmental Factor.)


Elaine Bardas

IAR Director Elaine Bardes discussed her organization’s commitment to animal care, sharing several animal rescue stories. (Photo courtesy of Steve McCaw)


Employees lined up for sweets

NIEHS employees lined up for sweets donated by staffers to support CFC. (Photo courtesy of Steve McCaw)


2015 CFC Events

Fall Fest/Charity Fair, Oct. 20, Building 101.

Fun Run/Walk with EPA, Oct. 21 (Rain Date October 23). More details to follow.

Pumpkin Carving Contest, Oct. 29. More details to follow.

Book Sale, Nov. 10-13, Building 101 C-Mall and Keystone Lobby

Bake Sale, Nov. 24, Building 101 Lobby and Keystone Lobby.

Silent Auction, Dec. 1, Building 101 Lobby and Keystone Lobby.



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