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A&FRC shows appreciation to local allies

By Airman 1st Class Tessa B. Corrick 2nd Bomb Wing Public Affairs

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Barksdale’s Airman and Family Readiness Center hosted its Annual Holiday Open House on Dec. 7, 2018.

The event was designed to show gratitude toward A&FRC community partners for their support throughout the year.

“The open house provided an informal and festive setting for community partners to tour the Airman and Family Readiness Center facility, visit with the staff and enhance their knowledge of the variety of programs offered to our military community,” said Beverly Ryles, 2nd Force Support Squadron A&FRC community readiness specialist.

Supporters, sponsors and donors looked over A&FRC displays with information about their programs.

“Most of these partners know about our programs already, or at least the ones they support, however , at the event we were able to showcase what we did with their contributions,” said Master Sgt. Jennifer Ellison, 2nd FSS A&FRC readiness NCO in charge. “For example, Brookshire’s donated $12,000 to our deployed programs. We showcased what their donation did for that program specifically.”

According to Ryles, base and local area community partners include representatives from local businesses, educational institutions, helping agencies and Bossier City and Shreveport’s chambers of commerce.  

One of the many programs these local allies support is the Employment Assistance Program (EAP), which is a tool used by the A&FRC to provide resources for education, training and career goals to Department of Defense cardholders.

Individual services offered by the program include dressing for success, mock interviews, negotiating techniques and resume critiques. Other services that are offered are career assessment, traditional resume, job fair preparation, starting a small business and federal employment workshops.

“The community partners support the EAP by providing necessary information about local employment opportunities, job banks and job referrals and other on-and-off-base resources related to employment,” Ryles added.

In order to keep programs like the EAP successful, the support of these local allies are vital, according to Ellison. 

“The importance of events like the A&FRC Open House is two-fold.  It is an opportunity for us to show our community partners what we have actually been able to accomplish with our A&FRC programs through our community partners’ time, donations, and support,” Ellison said. “For the community partners, it is an opportunity to learn more about the needs of the military family and the services and programs we offer in meeting those needs. It just adds another link to a community partnership bridge that is already in existence.”