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Cookie Drive reminds Airmen they are not alone

The Ellsworth Spouse’s Club arranges homemade and store-bought cookies for the Cookie Drive at Ellsworth Air Force Base, S.D., Dec. 9, 2019. The Club received roughly $277 in monetary donations and packaged more than 12,000 cookies, spreading holiday cheer to more than 700 dormitory single Airmen. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman Quentin K. Marx)

The Ellsworth Spouse’s Club arranges homemade and store-bought cookies for the Cookie Drive at Ellsworth Air Force Base, S.D., Dec. 9, 2019. The Club received roughly $277 in monetary donations and packaged more than 12,000 cookies, spreading holiday cheer to more than 700 dormitory single Airmen. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman Quentin K. Marx)

Heather Ryan, the Ellsworth Spouse’s Club Fundraising chairperson, and a student from the St. Paul’s School deliver cookies to Airmen residing in the dormitories at Ellsworth Air Force Base, S.D., Dec. 9, 2019. More than 12,000 cookies were packaged and delivered to more than 700 dorm Airmen, spreading holiday cheer to those away from their families this year. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman Quentin K. Marx)

Heather Ryan, the Ellsworth Spouse’s Club Fundraising chairperson, and a student from the St. Paul’s School deliver cookies to Airmen residing in the dormitories at Ellsworth Air Force Base, S.D., Dec. 9, 2019. More than 12,000 cookies were packaged and delivered to more than 700 dorm Airmen, spreading holiday cheer to those away from their families this year. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman Quentin K. Marx)

Children and teachers from St. Paul’s School in Rapid City, S.D., package cookies for the Cookie Drive at Ellsworth Air Force Base, Dec. 9, 2019. The students created handmade, personalized holiday cards and put them in every bag of cookies prior to the cookies being delivered to more than 700 dormitory Airmen assigned to Ellsworth. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman Quentin K. Marx)

Children and teachers from St. Paul’s School in Rapid City, S.D., package cookies for the Cookie Drive at Ellsworth Air Force Base, Dec. 9, 2019. The students created handmade, personalized holiday cards and put them in every bag of cookies prior to the cookies being delivered to more than 700 dormitory Airmen assigned to Ellsworth. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman Quentin K. Marx)

Heather Ryan, the Ellsworth Spouse’s Club Fundraising chairperson, holds a Cookie Drive for dormitory Airmen assigned to Ellsworth Air Force Base, S.D., at the Family Fare Super Market by Baken Park in Rapid City, Dec. 7, 2019. The purpose of the Cookie Drive is to distribute holiday cheer to single Airmen who are away from their families during the holidays. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman Quentin K. Marx)

Heather Ryan, the Ellsworth Spouse’s Club Fundraising chairperson, holds a Cookie Drive for dormitory Airmen assigned to Ellsworth Air Force Base, S.D., at the Family Fare Super Market by Baken Park in Rapid City, Dec. 7, 2019. The purpose of the Cookie Drive is to distribute holiday cheer to single Airmen who are away from their families during the holidays. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman Quentin K. Marx)

Lynell Rice Brinkworth, a shopper at the Family Fare Super Market in Rapid City, S.D., donates cookies to Jennifer Bassett, the Ellsworth Spouse’s Club Socials chairperson, Dec. 7, 2019. During the fundraiser, community members donated either pre-packaged cookies or provided a monetary donation for the Ellsworth Air Force Base Cookie Drive, an annual event for dormitory Airmen during the holidays. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman Quentin K. Marx)

Lynell Rice Brinkworth, a shopper at the Family Fare Super Market in Rapid City, S.D., donates cookies to Jennifer Bassett, the Ellsworth Spouse’s Club Socials chairperson, Dec. 7, 2019. During the fundraiser, community members donated either pre-packaged cookies or provided a monetary donation for the Ellsworth Air Force Base Cookie Drive, an annual event for dormitory Airmen during the holidays. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman Quentin K. Marx)

ELLSWORTH AIR FORCE BASE, S.D. -- The Ellsworth Spouse’s Club, with assistance from St. Paul’s School in Rapid City, collected and distributed cookies to more than 700 Ellsworth AFB dorm Airmen Dec. 7 through 9.

The purpose of the Cookie Drive is a fundraiser that aims to distribute holiday cheer to single Airmen who are away from their families during the holidays, reminding them they are not alone and that people are thinking about them.

“The Cookie Drive is a fundraiser where the Team Ellsworth Spouse’s Club accept prepackaged and homemade cookies [from the surrounding area], and the spouses wrap them up for dorm Airmen on base,” said Heather Ryan, ESC president.

The event would not be possible without help from the Rapid City community. During the fundraiser, community members donate either prepackaged cookies or provide a monetary donation. The monetary donation is then utilized to purchase additional cookies as needed, or saved for the next year’s event.

“If money is donated to the fundraiser the spouses club will buy cookies for the fundraiser with the money that was donated if there are not enough cookies for the cookie drive," Ryan said. "If there is any excess money from the cookie drive it will be donated to next year’s fundraiser.

Airmen also received personalized holiday cards in their cookie bags from children from St. Paul’s School.

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