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AFRC provides Key Spouse training

VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. – Engaging his class, Robert Purser, an Airman and Family Readiness Center community readiness consultant, instructs new Key Spouses about the roles they will fill as part of the Key Spouse Program here Thursday, Oct. 22, 2009. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Steve Bauer)

VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. – Engaging his class, Robert Purser, an Airman and Family Readiness Center community readiness consultant, instructs new Key Spouses about the roles they will fill as part of the Key Spouse Program here Thursday, Oct. 22, 2009. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Steve Bauer)

VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. -- Airman & Family Support is one of the Year of the Air Force Family's four Pillars of Excellence. (U.S. Air Force graphic/Steve Heuring)

VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. -- Airman & Family Support is one of the Year of the Air Force Family's four Pillars of Excellence. (U.S. Air Force graphic/Steve Heuring)

VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. -- Approximately six Vandenberg spouses gathered at the Airman and Family Readiness Center here for Key Spouse training Oct. 22.

The Key Spouse Program is a formal unit program designed to offer informal peer-to-peer Air Force community support.

"The Key Spouse Program is important to the wellness of the Air Force family by providing spouses with a built-in social network," said Antavis Geoffroy, a 30th Space Wing Key Spouse.

Out of concern for Air Force families, the Key Spouse Program was implemented Air Force-wide as a quality of life initiative in March 2009.

The program promotes individual, family and unit readiness by establishing continuous contact with spouses and families to provide Wingman support.

For some people, the decision to become a Key Spouse is derived from their own experiences as an Air Force spouse.

"When I first came to Vandenberg, I knew nobody," Mrs. Geoffroy said. "I remember having a lot of questions, but no one to ask. I became a Key Spouse because I want to be able to help others who are new to the base."

The Key Spouse Program serves as a link between the base leadership and the community.
Unit commanders are responsible for organizing their units' Key Spouse Program and putting it into action. The unit commanders do this by forming a team comprised of the Key Spouse mentor, the first sergeant and the Key Spouse.

Key Spouses are typically referred to the commanders from within their units. The commander then selects, appoints or replaces the Key Spouses. Commanders generally select Key Spouses who are unit family members with positive attitudes about the Air Force and are able to communicate and listen.

The AFRC is the facilitating organization for Key Spouses training. They provide referral support, information, oversight and assistance.

"I hope to be a good point of contact for people who have questions," Mrs. Geoffroy said. "I want to foster a greater sense of community among spouses as a unit and all of Vandenberg."

For more information about the Key Spouse Program, call the AFRC at 606-0039.