LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) - With Election Day now less than two weeks away, the U.S. military is making sure soldiers who won't be home to vote get the chance to.
When you're in active military, there's a good chance that you may not be home election day. And that's where the Federal Voting Assistance Program comes in. We caught up with some new recruits going through Camp Robinson and getting the chance to partake in this program and vote for the first time.
"We're just starting, we're about one week and a day in," Private Jazmin Garcia said.
It's the beginning of a military career for Private Jazmin Garcia and Private Joseph Calvert.
"You get more one-on-one with your teachers," Private Joseph Calvert.
They're starting at Camp Robinson with a GED program and experiencing the democratic process, as a bonus.
"For me, it was really easy, I got to register and vote online," Garcia said.
"I registered and signed up for the absentee ballot because I will be in basic training," Calvert said.
The two are among 35 soldiers at Camp Robinson so far who are taking part in the Federal Voting Assistance Program. It started back in 1986 giving military members away from home the chance to register and vote for elections.
"You have the sergeants and drill sergeants there with you walking you step by step, if you do something wrong, you start from the beginning," Garcia said.
This is Garcia's first time voting.
"No one in my family voted, so I didn't really know where to go or what to do until I got here," Garcia said.
It's Calvert's first time too.
"I grew up in Anaheim, CA and it was never really put out there for me," Calvert said.
But now armed with this chance, they're taking even more pride in this new career.
"I figured because I'm an American soldier now and we fight for that right, we fight for the freedom to have the right to vote," Calvert said.
"We fight for a purpose, to have the freedom to vote and I chose to vote," Garcia said.
It's an important choice while serving an important mission.
Camp Robinson started this program last week and a spokesman says they will continue until everyone who needs it there gets a shot. And we are also told this program is going on at Little Rock Air Force Base for both the airmen and their families.