Helping the Children's Inn

Six years ago, when she was president of AFCEA International's Bethesda chapter, Linda Berdine decided to find a way for the chapter to give back to the community. She came up with a plan that is still paying dividends.

Every year, the chapter throws a charity event to raise money for the Children's Inn at the National Institutes of Health (NIH), where children can stay with their families while receiving treatment for cancer. Her perseverance has paid off. This year's black-tie event helped push the total raised past the $1 million mark.

Berdine, president of G&B Solutions Inc., is on the Bethesda chapter's board and spearheads the annual event. She recently spoke with Federal Computer Week about her fund-raising efforts.

FCW: What's the Children's Inn?

Berdine: It's on the campus at NIH. They've just added 22 new rooms, with a brand-new wing opening up this month, bringing them up to 59 rooms available and doubling the space.

FCW: Why the Children's Inn?

Berdine: We shined a spotlight on it. Because we established this charity event, a lot of people come to me after the event asking, 'How can I personally get involved? How can I donate my own personal time?' They've had a lot of additional interest from the [information technology] community.

FCW: Do you spend time at the inn?

Berdine: I've stayed active at the inn. I've met many of the children. I go out there periodically and have lunch with them. Every year I try to meet with the child and mother who speak at the charity dinner so I know something about them when I introduce them.

FCW: What is your sense about how important your work is for the inn?

Berdine: We are the second largest charity event for the whole inn.

FCW: How much time do you devote to the fund-raiser?

Berdine: I've never added up the hours. The Monday after the event, I had to stay in bed. I felt like I got hit by a Mack truck. It does take a toll on you physically and mentally. It takes a good 100 hours of your time.

FCW: Do you plan to do it again next year?

Berdine: Sure.

Featured

  • Defense
    Ryan D. McCarthy being sworn in as Army Secretary Oct. 10, 2019. (Photo credit: Sgt. Dana Clarke/U.S. Army)

    Army wants to spend nearly $1B on cloud, data by 2025

    Army Secretary Ryan McCarthy said lack of funding or a potential delay in the JEDI cloud bid "strikes to the heart of our concern."

  • Congress
    Rep. Jim Langevin (D-R.I.) at the Hack the Capitol conference Sept. 20, 2018

    Jim Langevin's view from the Hill

    As chairman of of the Intelligence and Emerging Threats and Capabilities subcommittee of the House Armed Services Committe and a member of the House Homeland Security Committee, Rhode Island Democrat Jim Langevin is one of the most influential voices on cybersecurity in Congress.

Stay Connected

FCW INSIDER

Sign up for our newsletter.

I agree to this site's Privacy Policy.