by Tech. Sgt. Andria Allmond
?111th Attack Wing Public Affairs
11/12/2015 - HORSHAM AIR GUARD STATION, Pa. -- Nearly
20 Guardsmen from the 111th Attack Wing, here, participated in a
character education program held Nov. 10, at Mary, Mother of the
Redeemer Catholic School in North Wales, Pennsylvania.
The Guardsmen visited with the students to demonstrate various qualities
of citizenship, while also providing insight about life in the
"The goal of the event is to help the children develop skills to be good
citizens," said Anita Fleming, former teacher at the school and event
coordinator. "We are integrating Veteran's Day as part of the program.
The military members here can share the Air Force's core values of
Integrity First, Service Before Self and Excellence in All We Do as
qualities of a good citizen, while they serve as a representation of our
Wing members visited students from kindergarten to third grade. During
their time in the classrooms, they discussed specific attributes of
courteous citizens, read a book and completed a patriotic-themed craft.
111th ATKW members and volunteers partnered with students to complete
the project and then answered questions - ranging from uniforms and
saluting to combat and deployments.
"Programs like this have a positive effect on the kids," said Nicole
Foulke, second-grade teacher at MMR. "Unfortunately, they may see some
negative things about the military on television; so, it's really nice
for them to see (Air National Guardsmen) come here in military uniforms
and take part in working on a (craft) project just like we do on a
normal day. Because it's something that they don't always get to see,
they might be a little apprehensive at first. But they definitely have a
lot of questions."
Additionally, the event bolstered a sense of community and provided a feel-good experience for the volunteers.
"I am really grateful to come out here today and get involved in the
community," said Airman 1st Class Igor Karlov, a supply technician from
the 111th Logistics Readiness Squadron. "Seeing the kids get so
enthusiastic to have us visit made it a great experience - I loved it. I
remember looking up to military members when I was growing up and being
inspired by what they did. And now, I'm here doing the same for these
Not only did volunteers have an enjoyable time at the event, the students appeared to have fun as well.
"I believe that as members of the military and of the community, we have
a responsibility to serve as positive role-models," said Master Sgt.
Joe Sommers of the 111th LRS. "Being involved in an initiative that
promotes good citizenship is a win-win situation for everyone here.
"Overall I had a really good time. And with the amount of high fives we
all received, I believe the students did too," said Sommers.
Aside from fun, gratitude was also a shared sentiment by those involved in the school-sponsored event.
"The kids were really excited to have military members here and they
seemed to enjoy the interaction," said Foulke. "Everything went over
really well. We're grateful that (Wing members) took the timeout of
their day to come and see us."
Volunteers from the Airman & Family Readiness Center and the
Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 3258, Chalfont, Pennsylvania, also
participated in the event.