[caption id=“attachment_10305” align=“alignleft” width=“360”]Courtesy of the USO of Illinois Courtesy of the USO of Illinois[/caption]

Day 4 of the 12 Days of WIshbook is a time to focus on community.

USO centers aren’t just places to stop for a quick snack and a nap between flights. USO centers serve as a community hub on dozens of bases around the world. In an effort to boost that sense of community - and take a bit of financial burden from our younger enlisted troops with families - the USO hosts a variety of free community meals. The events take on several names - including No Dough Dinners - and usually occur a day or two before payday. That’s usually the point when lower-ranking troops - like Army Spc. Will Daugherty - and their families have stretched their paychecks to the limit:

“It’s always right before payday that we end up ordering pizza or eating off the dollar menu. It’s not ideal and the kids eat healthy when we can afford to, but you have to do what you have to do to get by, you know?” said Daugherty, a married father of four who attended a No Dough Dinner at USO Fort Riley, Kan., earlier this year. … “I’m really glad I found out about this – right here on base. It helps us, you know? Right at the moment when we need it most.”

For just a little dough out of your pocket, you can give an extra boost to military families this holiday season, right at the moment when they need it most.