Fort Polk's AFTB program graduates first group of teens
Fort Polk Garrison Commander Col. David Sage and Tammy Williams, teen program coordinator, congratulate the first group of teens to graduate from Fort Polk's Army Family Team Building teen program. From left are Williams, Taliyah Rambert, Ashley Toombs, David Matson, Dylan Hager and Sage.

FORT POLK, La. - Fort Polk's Army Family Team Building program's teen program graduated its first level one class at the Siegfried Youth Center Jan. 27. The Fort Polk AFTB is the first program of its kind in the United States to graduate an all-teen level one class.

The AFTB teen program is loosely modeled on the level one program for adults, according to Patricia Hauck, program manager.

"We have taken the basic 10 modules and broken them down a little further, personalizing them for our youth," said Hauck. "We have made it a 12-week program where we see the children once a week for 30-40 minutes and go over one module with them."

Modules include Army expectations; Army mission and values; Army impact on Families; acronyms, terms and times; chain of command; customs and courtesies; benefits and entitlements; supporting your education; financial readiness; basic problem solving; flag etiquette; and Family Readiness Groups and volunteering.

"There is something to be learned from a 12-year old who has been through three deployments with dad and four different schools, and is still having the best time being coined an 'Army Brat.' Our children have so much to say and they love the fact that someone is listening," said Tammy Williams, AFTB volunteer and teen program coordinator.

"Our middle schoolers and teens learn about everything from what the Army expects of them to what they can do for the Army as a volunteer. (The children) see their place in today's Army and feel as though they are not insignificant, but largely an integral part of our Army Family."

Williams said it has been her pleasure to work with this group of youngsters. "Someday, I hope that the AFTB for middle school and teens will progress to (offering) levels two and three, and eventually we (will) do a peer-led program where they can discuss topics among themselves."

Page last updated Wed February 11th, 2009 at 14:15