Family Assistance Centers

Thursday June 12, 2008

What is it?

The Army National Guard coordinates Family assistance for military personnel and dependents under the guidance of a state family program director (SFPD). Family assistance centers (FACs) are strategically placed throughout the 54 states and territories to overcome geographic dispersion of active Army and reserve component Families from centralized, installation-based service providers. From this baseline the ARNG can surge and relocate capacity and capability where needed. Most FACs are staffed with contractor personnel augmented with military, state employees, temporary technicians and volunteers.

What has the Army done?

The ARNG met the fiscal year (FY) 2007 requirement for 325 FACs. The FY08 operation cost is $36.6 million. $27.1 million covers personnel salaries, travel and training. Operational support costs are $2.3 million while $7.2 million sustains the Strong Bonds (marriage enrichment) Program.

What continued efforts does the Army have planned for the future?

The organization will maintain the 325 FACs offering vital support to active Army, Guard and Reserve Soldiers and their dependents. These centers are critical throughout the mobilization cycle and the long-term welfare of Soldiers and Families. FACs provide information, referral and outreach. This broad spectrum support includes a utility abatement program in Utah, saving Families over $60 per month in water, sewage and garbage bills and an organized wheat harvest in a Nebraska community to sustain the livelihood of a deployed Guardsman. FACs further organize the Guard Yellow Ribbon Program, a unique service providing continuous mobilization/reintegration cycle support.

Why is this important to the Army?

FACs offer a comfortable and convenient environment to garner information and assistance. For instance, a New Jersey FAC coordinated aid for a Soldier whose home was destroyed by fire just prior to his deployment. Within five days of the disaster, the FAC's efforts procured the Family a furnished new home and donations from local businesses. "It's easier for me to leave and do what I got to do because I know my Family is feeling a lot better about things", said the New Jersey Guardsmen. The Family Assistance Center allows the servicemember to concentrate on the mission at hand knowing that his or her Family is supported at home.


For additional information visit the National Guard Online Community


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