TRAVIS AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. – The Airman and Family Readiness Center at Travis Air Force Base, California offers a variety of programs and services for military families, including sponsorship courses, relocation assistance and personal or financial counseling.
The center provides these services free of charge to active-duty service members, Reservists, National Guard members, civilian employees and their families.
“The staff at the Airman and Family Readiness Center is ready and happy to serve our Travis community,” said Jaye Hurt, 60th Force Support Squadron acting chief of the A&FRC. “Our staff provides a variety of information and services including exceptional family member program assistance, school liaison services, volunteering support, relocation assistance, financial aid and financial education, as well as personal and professional development.”
One significant service the A&FRC provides is the Emergency Family Assistance Center, which the staff manages in response to an emergency situation, crisis or natural disaster.
“The EFAC provides a place for service members and families to come to should an emergency or crisis such as a natural disaster or mass casualty occur on or around Travis AFB,” said Master Sgt. Erine Gallant, 60th FSS A&FRC superintendent and readiness noncommissioned officer.
The EFAC is a ‘one-stop shop’ for resources all geared towards providing people assistance during a crisis, said Gallant. The EFAC provides mental health services, as well as finance and chaplain support. Representatives from the American Red Cross, Public Affairs and a variety of other resources are also available.
Additionally, the EFAC serves as a communication hub for the community.
“Once the EFAC is activated a call center is stood up to manage all incoming requests from those seeking information about the situation,” Gallant said. “When activated, the EFAC call center can be reached at 707-424-6100 or 707-424-8100.”
As the A&FRC readiness NCO, Gallant is responsible to ensure the EFAC is operational when needed. She also ensures Team Travis has access to information and resources throughout the deployment cycle.
“I provide education, care and support for active-duty members and their families through predeployment, during deployment and post deployment,” said Gallant.
The A&FRC provides briefings for active-duty members and their spouses, providing resources focused on the resiliency of both the service member and their families. Gallant also organizes “Hearts Apart.”
“Hearts Apart” is a themed dinner providing military families with deployed or remotely assigned military members networking opportunities with other families going through similar situations.
The A&FRC also offers school liaison services.
“The welfare of school age children at Travis Air Force Base is a high priority,” said Christian Mendoza, 60th FSS school liaison officer.
As the SLO, Mendoza maintains relations between Travis and several schools for pre-K through high school students.
“I am a point of contact for military-connected students, families and school personnel for any school-related concern,” said Mendoza. “I work to create partnerships between the various schools in the area and our military service members, I also inform schools about upcoming deployments to ensure families and schools are aware. Additionally, I organize activities to help military children understand their military heritage and I establish monthly classes for military members to learn about the educational system their children will encounter.”
“A SLO's primary task is to connect a military installation, resources and families to school personnel. SLOs are a great contact for both families and school personnel to ease the transition to new schools for military children who often face challenges other children don’t such as parental absence and multiple moves.”
The A&FRC also hosts numerous events including the annual Halloween Trunk or Treat, a variety of EFMP events, Military Saves Week and a volunteer appreciation luncheon.
For anyone interested in volunteering at Travis AFB or in the surrounding community, the A&FRC can help, said Mendoza.
The center maintains a database filled with volunteer opportunities and can partner volunteers with organizations requesting support, said Mendoza.
After recent storms damaged the multi-purpose room at Travis Elementary School, where hundreds of students eat lunch, the school needed volunteers to help supervise children during lunch service.
A call for volunteers went out base wide.
“The response we received was overwhelming,” said Mendoza, “as 65 people answered the call to help.”
Senior Airman Martel Angelo M. Surop, 60th Contracting Squadron, was one of those volunteers.
“By volunteering I get to be a part of something that strengthens the community,” said Surop. “Volunteering is a way for me to give back whether it's my time, my abilities, or just simply a helping hand.”
For more information about the A&FRC and the services it provides, call 707-424-2486.