By Derek GeanJune 25, 2015
FORT LEONARD WOOD, Mo. (June 25, 2015) -- As Army Community Service approaches its 50th anniversary in July, one program stands out in preparing Army Families for dealing with the rigors of military life.
The Army Family Team Building is a series of learning modules designed to empower community members and provide them with a strong foundation.
"For Army Community Service, it provides us the ability to provide various skills to Family members which help to build self-confidence and learn new skills which will empower them as they move from installation to installation," said JP Flores, AFTB Program manager.
The AFTB curriculum is designed to be adaptive, as the needs of the Army change. It is designed to educate those Soldiers, Family members and civilians new to Army life and also to enrich the knowledge of those who have a history with the Army.
Nadine Albrecht, an Army spouse and former Soldier, volunteers with the program and as a graduate of all the courses, serves as an advocate for the program.
"Army Family Team Building helped me transition from being a Soldier to an Army spouse years ago. It helped me to understand some of the more confusing aspects of this life from the other side. It has helped me connect to others who are going through the same thing. I started off as a student and am now an instructor hopefully impacting others," she said.
The program is divided into different levels.
Military Knowledge (K) Level
Participants learn about the Army life and how to maneuver through daily challenges by discovering how to decipher Army acronyms, use community resources, attain better financial readiness and understand the goal and impact of the Army mission on daily life.
Personal Growth and Resiliency (G) Level
Participants grow personally through self-development modules. The modules teach participants how to improve their communication skills, personal relationships and stress management. Participants also discover team dynamics, how to solve problems and how to resolve personal conflict.
Leadership Development (L) Level
Participants expand leadership skills, effective communication techniques and mentorship skills by taking the training modules. They also learn about the different leadership styles, how to run an effective meeting, how to manage group conflict and how to coach and mentor others.
Flores said AFTB also offers a Command Spouse Seminar, which is designed to provide future or current commanders and first sergeant spouses with the information and skills they will need to take on the roll of an informed, involved, productive and proactive member of the command team.
"Additionally, we have a Drill Sergeant Spouses Seminar designed to help equip drill sergeant spouses with the information and tools they will need to promote and support their spouse's tour of duty, along with their own Family's well being," Flores said.
Flores said it is important for the community to realize that AFTB is a volunteer-led program.
"We are constantly looking for volunteers to step up and help us teach these worthwhile courses. By them taking the time to volunteer, we provide them a skill, instructor training, that can assist them. They get an opportunity to share their knowledge and experiences with others who may be relatively new to Army life," Flores said.
Flores said he encourages all active, National Guard, Army Reserves, Department of the Army civilians, retirees, and their Family members to participate.
For more information, contact ACS at 573.563.0131, ext. 60212.
(Editor's note: This is the sixth in a series of stories celebrating ACS during their 50th Birthday Celebration. The GUIDON will publish the last of this series in July. Gean is the Fort Leonard Wood GUIDON Community editor.)