Issues, delegates needed for 27th annual AFAP Conference

| January 14, 2011 | 0 Comments
Delegates log issues that impacted quality of life on Army Hawaii installations at the 2007 AFAP Conference held at the Nehelani, Schofield Barracks. (Aiko Brum | U.S. Army Garrison-Hawaii Public Affairs)

Delegates log issues that impacted quality of life on Army Hawaii installations at the 2007 AFAP Conference held at the Nehelani, Schofield Barracks. (Aiko Brum | U.S. Army Garrison-Hawaii Public Affairs)

Vanessa Lynch
News Editor

 

SCHOFIELD BARRACKS — The Army’s quality of life is only as good as the people behind it.

Community members can help improve their quality of life by submitting suggestions or becoming a delegate for the 2011 U.S. Army Garrison-Hawaii Army Family Action Plan Conference, Feb. 8-11, at the Schofield Barracks Education Center in the Sgt. Yano Library, here.

AFAP is an Armywide program that helps improve quality of life issues. Through AFAP, all members of the Army, including active, Reserve and National Guard Soldiers, family members, retirees, surviving spouses and Army civilians have a forum to voice concerns to Army leadership and make recommendations for change.

“Anyone can be a delegate,” said Heather Miles, program specialist, Army Community Service. “No issue is too big or too small.”

Training will be provided for delegates and subject matter experts.

The conference begins at 12:30 p.m., Feb. 8, and runs from 8 a.m.-4 p.m., Feb. 9-10. Opening ceremonies will be held at the Tropics Recreation Center, 4-5 p.m, Feb. 8, and closing ceremonies will be held at the Nehelani, 10-11 a.m., Feb. 11. Free child care and lunch will be provided for delegates and conference volunteers throughout the week.

The effectiveness of the USAG-HI AFAP Conference depends on convening a group of delegates and subject matter experts who discuss the issues, select the ones they deem most important to the community and report these concerns to the command with specific recommendations.

Information provided through the AFAP process gives commanders and leaders insight into current satisfaction detractors, quality of life needs and expectations of Army constituents. Leadership then uses the information to implement changes that improve standards of living and support programs. These changes foster a satisfied, informed and resilient Army community.

“An issue is a problem that affects the readiness and well-being of our installation, community or the U.S. Army,” according to Col. Douglas Mulbury, commander, USAG-HI. “We need the cooperation of commanders, supervisors, Soldiers, family members, civilian personnel and retirees, to ensure the success of the 2011 USAG-HI AFAP Conference.”

AFAP is a year-round process that begins at the installation or unit level, allowing commanders at all levels to learn and seek solutions for community concerns.

In essence, AFAP provides the Army community a voice in shaping the standards of living and identifying issues related to the current environment.

“It gives us a voice in our own communities,” said Shelly Hinzman, military spouse and AFAP volunteer. “The ability to transfer GI Bill benefits and programs like Better Opportunities for Single Soldiers came from someone, on an installation somewhere, who filled out an issue sheet.”

Since its inception in 1983, AFAP has been responsible for 117 legislative changes, 162 Department of Defense or Department of the Army policy changes, and 178 improved programs or services.

The Army is the only service with a program like AFAP.

“The Army has proven that they do care about what we have to say, and the Army is asking us how we can make life better,” Miles said. “It’s our responsibility to respond.”

To become an AFAP delegate, call 655-1696, before Jan. 21.

Submit AFAP issues by filling out a conference issue sheet at www.mwrarmyhawaii.com; click “ACS” from the dropdown menu.

Return issue sheets by Jan. 21; either by e-mail, heather.miles@us.army.mil, by fax 655-1654, or by dropping it off at Army Community Service Center, 2091 Kolekole Ave., Schofield Barracks, or at Building 127A, Krukowski Road, Tripler Army Medical Center.

 

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