Support The Enlisted Project (STEP) is a San Diego-based program giving emergency financial help to enlisted families like the Shrums.
U.S. Navy swimmer PO1 Kyle Shrum and his wife, Heather, say that they want the very best for their kids. They were having a tough time providing that before STEP offered help.
While Gaige and his sister Taylor were in the womb, Gaige was on the bottom with his head jammed in place. So, he was born with a flat spot on his head that concerned his parents.
"To be a boy and not have hair covering his head like us women do, his head would be really noticeable," said Heather Shrum.
The Shrums’ doctor recommended a doc band helmet that cost several thousand dollars and insurance wouldn’t cover what they view as cosmetic.
Since Heather left her job to be a full-time mom, money's been tight.
"To hear that number to come up with - that was very hard."
“I can compartmentalize pretty well, but when it's your kids, it takes a toll on you,” said Kyle Shrum.
So what a relief when the Shrums arrived to the appointment and the check for the payment had already arrived, provided by STEP.
STEP helps in a variety of ways from providing emergency food to families trying to make it to their next pay check to providing assistance when families fall short on rent or needed children's items.
The organization helps eligible active duty military members in San Diego, Orange, Los Angeles, Ventura, San Bernardino, Riverside, and Imperial Counties.
"It takes all your worries away once we found out it was like a huge, huge, huge relief to know we were going to have help," said Kyle Shrum.
If you’re interested in donating to STEP to help other military families, go to their website.