I am honored to be a part of the Ohio National Guard Interservice Family Assistance Committee (ISFAC). As I am an Air Force spouse, you might find it a bit odd that I am part of this group, it being a Guard thing and all. OK, it's sponsored by the Guard, but it's truly inclusive. Wednesday, I was honored to sit in with people from all services, affiliations with military (spouse, children (mostly represented by parents) and family members) and volunteer organizations (this was my original entre into the group). I don't know if any other Guard units or states have these organizations, but it you don't - you should. Take a note from Ohio's page and get on board. This group is truly out to take care of the troops and the homefront. Kudos go out to LTC Bramlish and Michele Gire - not to mention the Governor's office who is incredibly supportive! Thought I'd share a bit about the ISFAC and then write some other posts about the great things they are accomplishing here in Ohio!
An Interservice Family Assistance Committee is a voluntarymilitary cooperative partnership organized to provide multi-service networkingfor training and assistance "to ensure Total Force Family Readiness". Their function is to provide assistance tofamilies of service members, both Active and Reserve Component, from theclosest source regardless of service component
The ISFAC provides an opportunity and place for FamilyPrograms Directors /Coordinators and Managers to network and identify care andservice providers to eliminate a duplication of efforts. The ISFAC establishes pre-planned deliverysystems in the event of mobilization or contingency through committee members'interaction. The outcome of thiscollaborative working relationship causes the expeditious assistance to servicemembers and their families.
Thegoal of the ISFACs is to strengthen existing family assistance delivery systemsin the event of mobilization, deployment, or natural disaster through theinteraction of committee members. Thisincludes meeting the identified need of military personnel, family members, andcommands by providing information, referral, education, and preventativeservices to enhance family readiness. These mutually supportive efforts allow for rapid coordinated servicesbetween instillations and units.
ISFACs are a bridge in achievinga holistic approach to Supporting Families and Service Members, enabling them to receive assistancefrom the closest source regardless of component affiliation thru the JointServices Family Support Network.
- Increase availability of and access to services for Reserve and Guard families
- Expanded communication and established support networks among family support providers
- Resolution of family issues in an Interservice environment
- Reduced duplication of services and efforts
- Enhanced family assistance during deployments and disasters.
ISFACs encourage and provide ongoing training fortheir members on topics such as critical incident stress, ombudsmanship,personal financial management, and family advocacy. Additionally ISFACs offer key volunteersleadership opportunities. They meet quarterly and I've learned so much each time I've attended!
Do you have something like this in your state? Service?