Soldier and Family Assistance Centers
What is it?
Soldier and Family Assistance Centers (SFAC) are a single entry point for Families and caregivers to empower themselves in order to support their Soldiers. The SFAC supports the Army Medical Action Plan in establishing an integrated and comprehensive continuum of care and services for Warriors in Transition (WT) and their Families.
What has the Army done?
The Installation Management Command (IMCOM) is establishing Soldier and Family Assistance Centers (SFAC) at installations that are home to WTs and their Families. These Centers will provide a safe haven where WTs, wounded DOD Civilians, and their Families can gather for mutual support and comradeship to aid physical, spiritual, and mental healing. In addition, these centers located near WT units and barracks in the campus setting will provide tailored and integrated support services and information. These services will equip and aid WTs and Families in making life changing decisions as they transition back to duty or to a new life outside the military. Administrative and other services include military personnel services, transition and employment assistance, government entitlements and benefits assistance, education services, social services, legal assistance, financial assistance, pastoral care and child care. These centers will also serve as the focal point for information on support services and entitlements/benefits from other federal, state, and local government and non-governmental agencies. At the larger SFACs, service providers from the Veterans Affairs, Traumatic Service Members Group Life Insurance (TSGLI) program, the Army Wounded Warrior Program (AW2) and Defense and Finance Accounting Service (DFAS) will also be collocated in the SFAC. Other services requiring less than a full-time presence will be brought forward to the SFAC at designated times. Still other services will be provided through priority off-site appointments which are coordinated by the SFAC staff. An additional on-line service dubbed Virtual SFAC (vSFAC) will connect WTs and their Families to resources on installations and in the civilian community via the Web.
What efforts does the Army plan to continue in the future?
On Jan. 1, 2008, Warrior in Transition Units (WTU) and SFACs achieved full operational capability. Army leaders at all levels continue to identify issues and implement solutions to achieve the desired end state of a streamlined system providing the best possible care and restoring the confidence of the American people in Army medicine and the United States Army. Garrisons are taking action to provide interim facility space for billeting, WTU facilities, and SFACs. Facility renovations and minor construction on interim facilities is underway or already complete. A comprehensive master plan of future projects and standard facility designs for barracks, WTU facilities and SFAC’s are nearing completion setting the stage for the first projects to begin FY08.
Why is this important to the Army?
Soldiers returning from war are entitled to the highest standards of health care and other services while in a hospital or during their recovery. Likewise, Soldiers should have facilities that promote their healing process.