FORT HUACHUCA, Ariz. – Child & Youth Service’s School Liaison Office, along with the Accommodation School District, held their Back-to-School Fair for the local community on July 21 at Murr Community Center.
“[The] Back-to-School Fair is an opportunity for kids, and families, to get some information about the local community and resources,” explained Paula Smedes, school liaison officer.
Representatives from local schools, services, organizations and clubs, which provide services to the families of Fort Huachuca, set up booths at Murr Community Center. The fair was a collection of resources and information all in one spot. Many of those services included Youth Sports & Fitness, childcare, parent-teacher organizations, Girl and Boy Scouts, USO, spouse clubs, AAFES, and medical, dental and emergency services.
Coming on the heels of the summer PCS season, many family members are transitioning in and out of the community with the service members and staff supporting the various commands on the installation. Knowing where to go for resources can require a lot of research and time for new community members and being able to access the resources in one convenient location can ease some of the stress.
Shannon McMahon, one of the family members who attended the event for the first time said, “that was pretty cool getting every resource right there…I don’t have to look everything up separately. It makes it a lot easier for me.”
The school liaison officer works with all the local schools as a bridge to connect the families to the services they may need. As a one stop shop of resources and information a big part of obtaining the information needed is working with the schools located on Fort Huachuca. One of those connections is with Mark Goodman, superintendent of Fort Huachuca’s Accommodation School District.
He highlighted this fair is, “a great opportunity to meet new families that are coming in, as well as to reintroduce ourselves to families that have been here. It is the first opportunity to kick off the school year.”
Most importantly the fair allows the local schools the ability to, “work with our families as partners. We want them to feel welcome in our schools,” according to Goodman.
The Back-to-School Fair has been an annual recurring event since before Smedes became the school liaison officer here. Although the previous two years’ events were scaled back to adhere to COVID measures, in the future she is, “hoping…we can get even more people out.”
To learn more about back-to-school resources, call the CYS School Liaison Officer at 520.533.0874.
To see more from the Back-to-School Fair, visit https://www.flickr.com/photos/us_army_fort_huachuca/albums/72177720300718436.
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Fort Huachuca is home to the U.S. Army Intelligence Center of Excellence, the U.S. Army Network Enterprise Technology Command (NETCOM)/9th Army Signal Command and more than 48 supported tenants representing a diverse, multiservice population. Our unique environment encompasses 946 square miles of restricted airspace and 2,500 square miles of protected electronic ranges, key components to the national defense mission.
Located in Cochise County, in southeast Arizona, about 15 miles north of the border with Mexico, Fort Huachuca is an Army installation with a rich frontier history. Established in 1877, the Fort was declared a national landmark in 1976.
We are the Army’s Home. Learn more at https://home.army.mil/huachuca/.