WESTBROOK – With hundreds of Maine Reservists being called to active duty in recent months, Maine’s credit unions announced the reactivation of the Operation Phone Home program through Jan. 25.

Participating credit unions will collect phone cards and/or cash for Operation Phone Home 2004 – A New Resolve. The Maine Credit Union League will contribute all phone cards and a check to the USO to distribute to troops and their families when the drive is completed.

Maine’s credit unions established a similar effort last spring and collected more than 401,000 minutes of calling time, the third highest donation of phone cards in the nation behind only Wal-Mart and Verizon.

Jon Paradise, governmental and public affairs manager at the league, said, “Whatever amount we are able to collect will make a difference. The primary reason for re-activating this program is a direct response to the increasing number of Mainers serving in the various Reserve branches now being activated and deployed.”

Paradise said, “Phone cards will be used for not only troops to call their families but also for families to call other family members for support while their loved ones are deployed in the Middle East and other locales.”

The goal is to collect at least 100,000 minutes. For more information, visit a credit union or contact the league at 1-800-442-6715, ext. 273, or visit www.mainecul.org

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