Wednesday, June 10, 2015

'Recharge for Resiliency' smooths reintegration process

by Staff Sgt. R.J. Biermann
31st Fighter Wing Public Affairs

6/10/2015 - AVIANO AIR BASE, Italy -- More than 600 Airmen from the 31st Fighter Wing are currently deployed to over a dozen different locations around the world. Time away from home takes its toll on everyone and every family differently; but during the reintegration process it's important for families to find time and opportunities to rebuild relationships.

"Spouses take on the roles that their Airman had, children aren't used to seeing you, and you're not used to having anyone around - that's the hardest part of transitioning back into home life," said Master Sgt. Anthony Costa, 31st Comptroller Squadron first sergeant.

To help with this transition, the Air Force recently kicked off a new recreationally focused program - "Recharge for Resiliency."

"The program aims to lift morale by offering discounted [Information, Tickets and Travel] and [Outdoor Recreation] trips and programs," said Laurie LeBlanc, 31st Force Support Squadron Marketing coordinator and R4R program manager. "The beauty of it is there's so much to see here in Europe, and there's no limit to the number of trips you can take."

According to LeBlanc, R4R is much like its predecessor, PLAYpass, except trips and programs are the only items available at discounted rates. Additionally, not all trips are offered through the program.

"Outdoor Recreation is currently offering four discounted trips and ITT is offering two, with plans of offering more," LeBlanc said. The golf course is also offering a [Ladies Professional Golf Association] clinic in August and a foot golf program every Sunday throughout the same month."

Individuals or families can take advantage of the program after their sponsor is away for 30 days or more in support of an operational mission; or upon return from their time away. To verify enrollment eligibility, the sponsor must first request a letter from their first sergeant. This letter must be presented to the ITT or ODR offices when signing up for a trip.

"I know how painful the [post-deployment] transition can be," Costa said. "Recharging is important to help you get back at supporting the [Aviano] mission."

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