By Tim HippsMay 31, 2011
THE Army Family Action Plan is a grassroots program that identifies and attempts to solve significant quality of life issues impacting Soldiers of all components, Families, retirees and Army civilians.
The process begins at the installation level, where almost 90 percent of issues are resolved, according to Maj. Gen. Reuben Jones, commander of the Army’s Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation Command. Handling issues at the local level results in ongoing community improvements. Issues beyond the local level are raised to command-level conferences and then to Army headquarters, where delegates from across the Army determine which will be selected for resolution by Army staff and Department of Defense agencies.
“The issues that make their way to Department of the Army headquarters all begin at a garrison or tenant unit, such as 5th (Special Forces) Group or an MI (military intelligence) brigade that belongs to Intelligence and Security Command, or maybe an engineering company that belongs to the Corps of Engineers,” explained Christina Vina, a program analyst who manages Army Family Action Plan Conference issues.
The issues are vetted at the local level, and those that cannot be resolved are forwarded to higher commands, such as Forces Command, Training and Doctrine Command, the Corps of Engineers, U.S. Army Europe or Eighth Army.
Those entities have their own conferences, where the issues are prioritized again. In addition to the Army commands, two special-interest groups, the Army Wounded Warrior Program and Survivor Outreach Services, have their own symposiums.
“At those conferences, their issues all deal with things affecting them,” Vine said. “(They) send their issues that cannot be resolved at their level up to headquarters, Department of the Army, and they come to me.”
Those issues are presented at the DA-level conference, where delegates vote on which are most important and need immediate attention from the Army and/or DOD. The remaining issues are also worked toward a resolution, but the delegates prioritize the tasks, meaning they help focus the direction of policy and programming at the DOD level.
For more information about the AFAP, visit www.myarmyonesource.com, or contact your local Army Community Service office.