WIESBADEN, Germany – Following two decades of repeated deployments and constant combat, the Department of the Army has come to understand that it can’t solely focus on the procurement of arms and material to win wars.
The Army understands that to be successful, a greater focus must be placed on assessing the human element as a very real and important component to winning on the modern battlefield.
The impacts of multiple overseas movements and continuous combat can have adverse impacts on the health of the Army's forces. The Army has realized that it must change how it thinks about and looks at its people.
Investing in people has become a top priority for the Army. Emphasis on the overall health of its people is paramount in all that the Army does and is an important component to its readiness success in the face of global threats.
The Army’s Resilience Directorate program is working to improve the holistic soldier’s well-being by providing the policy, resources, and capabilities to increase their readiness and resilience. This improves the individual's mental fitness while also combating such issues as high suicide rates, divorce and instances of PTSD.
During an upcoming grand opening of their new resiliency campus, U.S. Army Garrison Wiesbaden will be ready to show off their approach to ready resiliency and improving overall Soldier health.
The USAG Wiesbaden Resiliency Campus’ role will focus on the five pillars of comprehensive soldier fitness – physical, spiritual, emotional, fitness, family – and brings those support services together collectively on one campus.
The concept of the USAG Wiesbaden resiliency campus “is to consolidate the resiliency-based services in one area to make it easier for the customer,” said Andy Munsterman, USAG Wiesbaden's Alcohol Substance Abuse program manager.
The first of its kind in Europe, the USAG Wiesbaden Resiliency Campus offers confidentially to the customer while providing the focused care needed to improve the customer’s quality of life through better mental and physical health.
Prior to consolidating, resiliency services were collocated in areas that did not offer much anonymity or efficiency to those seeking help from agencies such as SHARP, EFMP or ASAP.
“Here service members, civilians and family members can get the help they need from one central location and in the relative obscurity not afforded to them in previous locations around Clay Kaserne,” added Munsterman.
Bringing together agencies such as the American Red Cross, Sexual Harassment/Assault Response and Prevention program, Army Wellness Center, Military Family Life Counselors, and Exceptional Family Member Program all under one roof with the Health Clinic and Religious Services Office in close proximity – creates a campus-like area where the customer can seek help in a centralized location.
“This sends a message to the community that we are concerned about the overall health of those that make up the Wiesbaden military community, whether a service member, family member or a part of the civilian workforce,” added Munsterman.
A source of information and help, the resiliency campus is not the end to a customer’s problem. The resiliency campus serves as the customer’s launching point to learn the necessary life skills to cope with setback and adversity, while being provided the tools and resources essential to becoming a problem solver within their own lives.
America's Army is always on guard standing a post and facing possible threats in faraway lands, which can pile mounds of stress on the shoulders of service members, families and the military civilian workforce.
Everyday life brings its own sense of challenge and with it, different types of stressors. Daily adaptations from post-COVID tempo changes to employment and financial challenges are examples of life impacts that resiliency centers and campuses can help with.
As more and more senior leaders came forward to acknowledge their problems with mental health or in their personal relationship – the stigma behind seeking help has changed. With the emphasis on holistic physical and mental health, admitting to and seeking help is now seen as courageous and career saving, where it was once perceived as a sign of weakness and considered to be a career ender.
The USAG Wiesbaden Resiliency Campus opens on Sept. 7. For more information follow the Garrison Wiesbaden Facebook page.