FAIRCHILD AIR FORCE BASE, Wash. --
The Airman Leadership School at Fairchild conducted its first helping agency tour Oct. 15, here.
The tour allowed 28 Airmen and their spouses to get first-hand knowledge about important helping agencies whose purpose is to support all Airmen and dependents during an array of situations.
“The helping agency tour is important to our new first line supervisors because it not only provides a refresher of what these agencies have to offer, but establishes familiarity with agency locations while creating a stronger foundation through networking as they put faces to places,” said Master Sgt. James Parkis, 92nd Logistics Readiness Squadron first sergeant. “Being knowledgeable and knowing locations of each resource will better outfit first line supervisors to assist subordinates or families in time of need, and helping to create a more resilient force.”
The goal of the tour is to create and maintain resilient Airmen and spouses through introduction to the vast programs and resources offered across the installation that are available to them, Parkis added.
Airmen toured agencies such as equal opportunity, area defense council, chapel, Airman and Family Readiness center, mental health and many more.
“The agencies we chose were strategic. These were the places that Airmen need to know,” said Master Sgt. Myra Staton, Team Fairchild’s ALS commandant. “In the past, we had helping agencies come to the school house and offer things that first line supervisors should know, but Chief Hodges [the 92nd Air Refueling Wing command chief] had the idea to actually show these Airmen where these agencies are located on base.”
The tour comes on the heels of the Air Force’s Resilience Tactical Pause, empowering ALS leadership and first sergeants to emphasize the importance of these resources to combat Air Force wide issues.
Several spouses and significant others of the ALS class members joined the class on the helping agencies tour.
“Often times the spouses see what is going on at home, and hopefully they can recognize the signs that maybe the supervisors miss or [that] the Airman is hiding at work,” Staton said. “They need to be aware of these things just as much as the Airmen.”
These agencies are able to support spouses and dependents as well as Airmen, Staton said.
First sergeants from around base also attended the tour. While there, they helped guide discussions, answer key questions and provide feedback for the Airmen.
“[First sergeants] are the ones who deal with helping agencies more often; they know the culture and climate of their units,” Staton said.
Students and helping agencies declared the tour a success, as it provided critical resources to those in a position to help others in need.
“This was the first one, so we are really excited to see how it is going to evolve,” Staton said. “It is always about making things better. I really appreciate all of the helping agencies and first sergeants who took the time out of their day to make this tour a success. Our Airmen are now armed and ready to go be effective first line supervisors in their units.”