DFMWR supports Hawaii Soldiers and families before, during and after deployments

| February 24, 2011 | 2 Comments

MWRLogo2010The Directorate of Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation’s mission is to provide for the well-being of the community. The directorate provides quality of life programs commensurate with the service of Soldiers and their family members.

DFMWR supports services and training to Soldiers and their family members throughout pre-deployment, during deployment and post-deployment phases.

Deployment support deliverables include a multitude of programs designed to address key points of the five pillars of the Comprehensive Soldier Fitness program — physical, social, spiritual, family and emotional — for both Soldiers and families.

With its robust mobilization and deployment readiness program, DFMWR offers a multitude of training to deploying units, customized to the unit’s individual needs.

Spouses and families of deployed Soldiers are invited to take part in the award-winning Blue Star Card program, a discount and activity program. As well, training is provided for family readiness assistants and groups on a monthly and quarterly basis, respectively, so they can better enhance the flow of information and increase the resiliency of their unit’s Soldiers and their families.

Below is a listing of active programs delivered by DFMWR in support of deployment cycle support, or DCS.

Training/Pre-deployment Phase

Many programs are mandated prior to, during and post-deployment, per the DCS directive.

The rear detachment command, or RDC, is trained six months prior to deployment. Rear detachment training has been incorporated into the installation Pre-Command Course, provided quarterly. The Mobilization & Deployment Readiness Program provides customized RDC training to units.  

The Unit Service Coordinator Program (USC) Program assists commanders and rear-detachment commanders with meeting the needs of their Soldiers and families. The USC team for each unit serves as the unit’s single point of contact to coordinate services provided by Army Community Service and make sure command teams get what they need.

Other pre-deployment training includes the following courses:

  • Sexual Assault Program Pre-deployment Training.
  • Deployment expos, which involve 25 military and civilian agencies, three months prior to a unit’s deployment.
  • Pre-deployment Battlemind for Spouses.
  • Pre-deployment Communication for Couples.
  • Pre-deployment briefings about wills, powers of attorney, safety and family care plans.
  • Pre-deployment training about arranging care for children in the absence of a parent.
  • Pre-deployment training about Military OneSource.
  • Pre-deployment training about Tricare services, such as counseling.

DFMWR develops and executes a deployment “send off” gathering, in conjunction with unit leadership, prior to a unit’s deployment.

Numerous ongoing programs support family members while their Soldier is deployed. Among them are life skill classes such as “Stress Management,” “Couples Communication,” “Anger Awareness,” “Children & Deployment,” a “Home Alone” workshop for kids, “Boot Camp for New Dads,” ”New Parent Resource Workshop” and “Newborn Care.” Other life skill classes target financial readiness, such as “All About Credit,” “Managing your Checking,” “First-Term Financial Training,” “Understanding Your Tax Benefit,” ”Understanding Insurance & Scams,” “Financial Planning for Deployment” and “Secrets of Car Buying.” The “Employment Orientation” and “Civilian Resume Writing” classes assist job searches.

DFMWR’s Army Community Service can provide training ”when and where you want it.”  ACS workshops can be customized to individual units. For example, its New Parent Support Program can provide home visits and classes, and its Military and Family Life consultants, of MFLCs, can provide consultations and workshops for units and family members.

ACS’s Financial Readiness Program or Army Emergency Relief can help with credit repair, budgeting and debt reduction.

The computer lab provides a web camera, access to e-mails and the Internet and video teleconferencing, so family members can keep in touch with deployed Soldiers.

As well, family readiness support assistants, called FRSAs, and family readiness groups, FRGs, receive quarterly and monthly training, respectively, all to support family members throughout DCS.

Relocation and newcomers workshops, as well as a newcomers island tour are offered on a periodic schedule.

Additional programs include the Exceptional Family Member Program, the Autism Support Group, and the Down Syndrome Support Group.

During Deployment

While Soldiers are deployed, DFMWR’s Blue Star Card program provides many services for family members. Services include these:

  • Child, Youth and School Services’ family support, which gives 16 hours, per month, of free child care during deployment.
  • CYSS additionally discounted child care fees during deployment.
  • CYSS Youth Sports discounted participation fees.
  • CYSS free child care during FRG meetings.
  • A 10-percent discount at the Nehelani, Hale Ikena, Kolekole Bar & Grill, Mulligan’s and Leilehua Grill restaurants.
  • A 10-percent discount on bowling fees at all Army bowling centers and $1 off bowling coupons.
  • A $10 discount, per night, on cottages at Pililaau Army Recreation Center.
  • A $5 discount on golf coupons at all Army golf courses.

Further deployment support groups and classes, as well as care response teams, support family members.

All life skill classes and workshops are ongoing; they remain available during pre-, during and post-deployment. The New Parent Support Program, MLFCs, Military OneSource, Tricare counseling and Survivor Outreach Services remain ongoing, too.

Also, parenting classes can be customizedto meet the needs of different age groups.

Redeployment

The rear detachment begins transitioning for redeployment six months prior to a unit’s return. As well, ACS and chaplains’ unit ministry teams begin offering a “Family Strong Series” of classes, six months and 30-60 days prior to redeployment. A “Hearts on the Homefront” class is offered 30-60 days prior to redeployment.

After the unit’s return, five different rest and relaxation workshops are offered 30-60 days following redeployment.

Post Deployment/Reintegration

Soldiers complete several mandatory programs to fulfill DCS directives:

  • Post-Deployment Battlemind for Spouses.
  • Reintegration training, which includes ACS Behavioral Health Reintegration Training and the Returning Warrior Program, 60-90 days upon reintegration.
  • ACS focus groups, 60 days upon reintegration.

Additionally, “reconstitution” identifies and refers family members who have experienced problems during deployment to appropriate agencies, and other training is recommended for Soldiers and family members:

  • Communication training for spouses, families and children.
  • The “Families Strong Series” post-deployment phase, 30-180 days after reintegration.
  • Appointments with MFLCs, as needed.

Finally, DFMWR’s ACS provides an ever-changing list of prevention and education training. Some include “Master Resiliency” training, which can be completed in one-hour blocks of instruction, or as workshops, on a flexible schedule.

Other requested courses include “Hunt the Good Stuff,” “Activating Event, Thought Consequence,” “Detect Icebergs,” “Energy Management,” “Problem Solving” and “Put It In Perspective.”

(Editor’s Note: The print version of the Feb. 25, 2011, Hawaii Army Weekly included a special 2-page feature on how U.S. Army Garrison-Hawaii supports Soldiers and families before, during and after a deployment. Due to space limitations, only short blurbs were able to be published on each directorate and office. Readers were directed to read more about the services FMWR provides online. Click here to view how the garrison works together to support Soldiers and families.)

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Category: News, Special Inserts

Comments (2)

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  1. Miami91jd says:

    my daughter is a new mom with her husband recently deployed, she needs a help and a support system, how can I help her connect to your services?
    Concerned Mainland Mom

  2. Hawaii Army Weekly says:

    Congrats on the new baby! ACS is a great place to start. Contact ACS at Schofield Barracks, Building 2091, 655-4227, or visit http://www.hiwmr.com. The Blue Star Card program is also great at helping during deployment. The program is available at Schofield Barracks, Building 572, 655-0002.

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