BUCKLEY AIR FORCE BASE, Colorado --
Members of the Airman and Family Readiness Center recently organized something unprecedented – They opened their doors to Team Buckley’s allied partners for the monthly Newcomer’s Orientation at Buckley Air Force Base, Colorado, June 20, 2018.
Through a series of briefings, newcomers from different bases are introduced to various agencies and resources available to service members and their families. However, for Team Buckley’s allied partners, the transition to both a new assignment and a new country did not consist of any formal orientation – until now.
“Newcomer's Orientation is open to all personnel and their families assigned to Buckley AFB,” said Patricia O. Pope, the A&FRC flight chief. “Allied partners voiced concerns to base leadership they were not receiving enough information prior to arrival. In turn, special emphasis has been placed on providing information upon their arrival to address concerns on housing, medical, base services and resources.”
Common things such as everyday driving could be a stressful endeavor. Imagine coming from a country where the signs were unfamiliar and you had to break the instinct of driving on the left side of the road. The list of things U.S. forces consider routine might not be as common for allies coming from different parts of the world.
“Allied partners will receive unique information that is pertinent to making a smooth transition from their various countries to living in the United States,” said Ames Guidry, the A&FRC community readiness consultant.
“Information provided will include the safety and driving rules by the Colorado State Patrol, medical services available for them on base, and recreation information out in the local community,” added Guidry.
The briefings will be offered as needed in conjunction with the monthly Newcomer’s Orientation. Allied partners can reach out to the A&FRC at 720-847-6681 to get more information on openings.
“The primary goal is to welcome our international families to the Mile High State and provide resources, services, and information to assist with their immersion into our community,” said Pope. “As we build this program, it will serve as a benchmark for other Air Force Space Command bases across the Air Force that also host International families.”