IPRU prepares Airmen for deployments
By Airman 1st Class Steve Bauer , 30th Space Wing Public Affairs
/ Published July 17, 2009
VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. -- Airmen have enough things to worry about when preparing for deployments, from taking care of their personal finances to assembling mobility bags and completing the required deployment training - just to name a few.
Although preparing for deployments can be a stressful time for servicemembers, Vandenberg Airmen have the 30th Force Support Squadron's installation personnel readiness unit to help guide them in the right direction for a successful deployment and return home.
"We try and ease the pain that Airmen might experience in the pre-deployment stages," said Staff Sgt. Manuel Fernandez, the assistant noncommissioned officer in charge of IPRU. "We are always here to help answer questions Airmen have about deployments."
One of the ways Vandenberg increases the readiness of its personnel is by providing the "need-to-know" deployment knowledge.
"We provide our Airmen with as many tools as we can, administratively, to ensure that each Airman has all of the information he needs before and after he returns from his deployment," said Staff Sgt. Steven Leduc, the noncommissioned officer in charge of IPRU. "Our job is to make sure all our deploying personnel and supplies are ready to deploy."
Vandenberg's IPRU is responsible for many roles involving deployments and exercises.
"We are responsible for providing installation-wide personnel deployment planning and execution and personnel support regarding accountability, deployment availability, duty status reporting for contingencies, exercises and deployments," Sergeant Leduc said. "Our mission, day to day, is getting Airmen to the right place at the right time. To do this we brief the Airmen on both in and out processing procedures and make sure they have the proper paper work and deployment training completed."
Sometimes an obstacle the personnel in the IPRU face is when Vandenberg receives a sudden deployment tasking.
"Airmen need to understand that they can be tasked to deploy at any given time, regardless of their Air Expeditionary Force tempo band," Sergeant Leduc said. "Since this is the case, Airmen need to have a serious mindset and be ready at all times.
"One of the challenges of our job is responding to a tasking on short notice," Sergeant Leduc said. "During these times, we have to get the Airmen trained, out processed and shipped off to their deployed location all within a week."
Airmen preparing to deploy should work closely with their unit deployment mangers, however, when questions about deployments arise, Vandenberg Airmen do have the luxury of readiness units such as the IPRU.
Airmen can direct questions concerning deployments to Vandenberg's IPRU at 606-7574.