Fort Carson kicks off 2024 AER campaign

Fort Carson, Colorado, logo

Anissa Connell | Fort Carson Public Affairs Office | March 7, 2024

FORT CARSON, Colo. – Fort Carson leadership kicked off the Army Emergency Relief campaign Feb. 29, 2024, at the William “Bill” Reed Special Events Center on post to help Soldiers understand the benefits available to them.

AER is meant to promote financial readiness along with helping relieve the distress of Soldiers and their Families by providing grants, interest free-loans and scholarships.

“We’re going to ensure that when we’re finished with this portion of the campaign, that we’ve educated and trained our people so they can help Families and single Soldiers who are going through times of crisis,” Maj. Gen. David Doyle, commanding general of the 4th Infantry Division and Fort Carson, said during opening remarks.

Since 1942, AER has aided over 4 million Soldiers and their Families, resulting in over $2 billion in assistance.

In 2023, Fort Carson Soldiers donated over $52,000 during the campaign. AER provided $322,644 in grants and over $2.3 million in interest-free loans at Fort Carson.

The top five categories of AER assistance at Fort Carson last year were housing ($651,188), car repairs ($520,165), emergency travel ($163,213), Career Skills Program ($202,286) and utilities ($73,707).

“This program helps Soldiers who need assistance, and it may help that Soldier who’s donating one day. It’s all about Soldiers helping Soldiers,” said Cedric Woodyard, Fort Carson AER officer.

In 2024, AER is aiming for a 10 percent participation rate during the three-month campaign along with making sure 100 percent of Soldiers are informed of the services available through the program.

“We want people to know what we do, the services that we provide. A lot of our service members only know a few of them, such as rent, car payment or car repair, but we have over 38 categories of assistance,” Woodyard said.

Warrant Officer John Watson, 4th Combat Aviation Brigade, 4th Infantry Division, previously received assistance through AER.

“I had to repair something on my car, and I couldn’t get to work,” said Watson. “I didn’t have enough money to do it, so I went to AER and got that loan. It was just enough to get me back on my feet.”

Watson noted Soldiers may be hesitant to reach out to get help from AER but encourages them to talk to someone who has used it before or visit with their unit representative.

“Keep an open mind that AER is going to try its best to process whatever application you put in,” he said.

The AER campaign runs through June 14. Soldiers can help other Soldiers who may be struggling financially by donating to AER online at or by contacting their battalion representative or campaign coordinator. To learn more about AER services, visit

More on the 2024 AER Annual Campaign.