By U.S. Army Garrison-HawaiiJune 8, 2012
SCHOFIELD BARRACKS, Hawaii -- If Heather Miles, program manager, Army Family Action Plan; Army Community Service; Directorate of Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation; U.S. Army Garrison-Hawaii, can find more delegates like Linda Lee, she will enter the 2012 AFAP with confidence.
"We are looking for delegates from all demographics: family members, retirees, active duty and civilian (participants)," Miles said.
For Lee, Army spouse and mother of two children under the age of three, her combined year-and-a-half experience as an applicant, then team facilitator and most recently as regional delegate, May 1-4, has been rewarding.
"I see the many ways that AFAP has touched my life and the lives around me," Lee said.
She described the conferences as her most rewarding experience, saying it was a " privilege of volunteering."
"That's right; I said 'privilege of volunteering for.' AFAP challenges the way I think about the Army and what is important to me and my growing family. Sitting in a room with people I have never met, I am suddenly aware of how many things I am passionate about and am willing to stand up for and against.
"I watch as a single idea transforms into the group's mission and at the end of the conference we are all mentally and emotionally exhausted, but when asked, every person would do it again in a heartbeat."
Through AFAP, annual leave carryover was increased from 60 to 75 days which means longer down times between permanent changes of station, Lee said. And, AFAP issue resolutions like Operation Security Training for family members makes deployment safer for Soldiers.
"It is amazing that these things were possible because AFAP exists and because a person, much like you or I, decided to submit the issue," she said.
"AFAP has become the tool for change in my Army life."
AFAP delegates, volunteers sought
Interested in getting involved in the upcoming AFAP Conference, Oct. 29-Nov. 2? Contact Heather Miles, program manager, at 655-0705.
(Editor's Note: Lee contributed to this article.)