By Maj. Gen. James M. MilanoMarch 17, 2011
FORT JACKSON, S.C. -- Recently we opened the Family Life and Resiliency Center and took another major step in providing the Soldier and his or her family members - as well as DA civilians - the most advanced and comprehensive resiliency programs the Army offers.
The FLRC on Fort Jackson is a dedicated center of resources to enhance physical, emotional, social, family and spiritual resiliency. It is operated by a team of professional caregivers to include chaplains, resiliency leaders and trained volunteers.
The opening of the center means that we can now integrate the Family Life Chaplaincy into our overall resilience approach. This complements our effort to provide resiliency training across Fort Jackson. As part of the Comprehensive Soldier Fitness Program, we have been producing master resilience trainers since the opening of the Army's 10-day Master Resilience Training course in April 2010.
Remember that the Comprehensive Soldier Fitness program is geared toward the development of holistic fitness to enhance and build resilience in our Soldiers and families. The CSF goal is to build on five dimensions of strength: physical, emotional, social, spiritual and family. Keep in mind that resilience itself refers to the ability to grow and thrive in the face of challenges and to bounce back from adversity. Master resilience is one of four elements of the CSF program.
The Family Life Chaplaincy approach is different from master resiliency, which focuses primarily on mental fitness.
The FLRC delves into the spiritual aspect. Here on Fort Jackson, this approach is combined under one roof. A person receives the best of clinical counseling and the best of proactive training. Venues that focus on the family and spiritual aspects of the resiliency model comprise the bulk of training events.
I am excited to see that we have these programs in place. Even though the FLRC is chaplain-based, it doesn't mean that a person has to be religious to take advantage of the services that are being offered at the facility. The key is to seek counseling or help when you believe that you need it.
We must continue to tear down the misconception that if someone seeks psychological or emotional help, he or she is displaying a sign of weakness - nothing could be further from the truth. It is OK for someone to seek help. Frankly, the act of a person admitting that he or she needs help takes courage.
As Army leaders, we have must continue to arm our Soldiers with all the mental tools that they need so that they can successfully deal with the challenges we encounter from persistent conflicts. I am a firm believer in master resilience and the great work from our Family Life Chaplains program. We are showing Soldiers and their families how to confront challenges in a positive way so that they can grow from their experiences.
Positive psychology continues to gain ground in today's Army, as we have seen the effects of "Army Strong," a parallel program that was launched several years ago. The mental and emotional fitness of our Soldiers and families no longer takes a back seat to physical fitness. Soldiers need to maintain their psychological fitness and it's the Army's responsibility to make sure that each and every Soldier has the most advanced training and counseling available.
The opening of the FLRC is another prime example of doing just that.
Army Strong and Victory Starts Here!