Airman and Family Readiness Center supports Airmen, their families

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Ethan Spickler
  • 445th Airlift Wing Public Affairs

The Air Force lifestyle is often accompanied by a multitude of stressors, anticipated and unanticipated. It sometimes becomes difficult for service members to balance family life, recreation and work responsibilities while they serve our country.


In order to address the concerns of Airmen and their families, the Airman and Family Readiness Center was created to alleviate some of the burdens placed on service men and women.


 The stated mission of the A&FRC is to provide targeted Airman and family support and services, contributing to the mission readiness, resiliency and well-being of the Air Force Reserve community.


“I don’t take anybody walking in the door for granted,” said Alvin L. Dennis, an Air Force retiree and the community readiness consultant at the 445th Airman and Family Readiness Center. “This is a way of life for me. I enjoy doing this. When someone walks into my office, and I can provide them with the support they need, I feel fulfilled, and every time I help an Airman, I open doors to help other Airmen down the road.”


One of the most important services offered by the Airman and Family Readiness Center is the distribution of information.


In the fast-paced, part-time environment of the Air Force Reserve, it is hard to pass information to thousands of Airmen during their unit training assembly weekends. The A&FRC acts as a hub where Airmen can receive information on benefits that they are entitled to and programs that focus on morale, welfare and readiness.


“We know that there are struggles in regards to finances and employment,” said Dennis. “We know our members have student loans and family challenges as well, especially during deployment. We try to provide assistance by being here for them as a support element and providing them with the resources they need. Overall, I want to help our Airmen in every walk of life that we can assist them in.”


The Airman and Family Readiness Center offers extensive financial support services and employs certified financial planners to assist Airmen in achieving their financial goals. These services are offered free of charge and can save Airmen thousands of dollars when compared to their civilian equivalents. Staff at the A&FRC also provide assistance with resume building and career planning.


The A&FRC not only provides knowledge, it also provides certain tangible benefits that can be provided to Airmen directly by A&FRC staff members. They work closely with the Air Force Aid Society to help relieve the distress of Air Force members and their families during financial emergencies. AFAS can assist with vehicle repairs, rent, basic living expenses and various other situations.


“The mission our Airmen have to do, they can’t be tied up with financial, employment and education concerns,” said Dennis. “If we can alleviate their worry while at home and while they are deployed, then we have done a good job. There is always someone here to provide support to service members and spouses. This is the place to go to whenever a situation arises that creates unnecessary stress.”


The Airman and Family Readiness Center staff pride themselves on their ability to support the mission.  Airmen of the 445th have access to one of the most extensive support networks available, and many choose to use the services provided to them. It is the kind of support one can only get from men and women who understand the military lifestyle, the challenges that accompany it and have a passion for keeping Airmen prepared for those challenges.


“I live for the opportunity to assist our service members,” said Dennis. “This isn’t just a job to me. If our Airmen receive what they came in here for, they are happy, and the happiness of our Airmen is my satisfaction.”