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Vol. LX, No. 21
October 17, 2008
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Roberts Emcees NIH CFC Kickoff Oct. 2

  Cokie Roberts (r), CFC kickoff emcee, poses with humorist and cancer survivor Roz Trieber, who lifted spirits before vendors served lunch.  
  Cokie Roberts (r), CFC kickoff emcee, poses with humorist and cancer survivor Roz Trieber, who lifted spirits before vendors served lunch.  

The weather couldn’t have been more perfect for the hundreds of NIH’ers who assembled in the quad between Bldgs. 31C and 33 to begin the Combined Federal Campaign season.

The CFC is the annual fundraising drive conducted by federal employees in their workplaces each fall. With charities set up under a large white tent and food vendors around the outside, the Walter Johnson High School Jazz Band set a celebratory musical tone, right up until the St. John’s College High School Color Guard started the program.

Beverly Goodwine of NCI welcomed famed broadcaster and emcee Cokie Roberts, who is no stranger to NIH or the CFC. As a Children’s Inn board member, Roberts remembered the year a snafu prevented the inn from being a CFC charity: “The children and the inn were really affected without that funding.”

Both NIH director Dr. Elias Zerhouni, a strong CFC supporter, and NCI director Dr. John Niederhuber, the NIH CFC vice-chair, thanked NIH for its generosity over the past 6 years of Zerhouni’s directorship. During the era, NIH raised $10.5 million and always collected more than its goal—so much that “we want to raise more than the $2.2 million collected last year,” said Niederhuber.

Keeping in mind that CFC is all about the charities and those who benefit from them, the kickoff featured inspirational guest speakers who shared personal stories. Tom and Sheila Baker talked about how a personal experience of loss inspired them to create a non-profit organization, Special Love, and Camp Fantastic, a camp for children and young adults with cancer where youngsters and their families can enjoy a “normal” life like healthy kids.

Darnell Owens, a Hurricane Katrina survivor, talked about the government, churches and charities that helped him get back on his feet. “Food and Friends brought me meals three times a week, I was able to go to Manna once a month for food and supplies…I received a lot of help…and I still get help today,” he said.

Through the end of the year, events across NIH will help raise awareness and provide opportunities to meet CFC charities and to donate at a Caring Station. There will be discounted lunches available, along with opportunities to have fun and win prizes. To keep abreast of the special events, visit http://cfc.nih.gov. NIHRecord Icon

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