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Summer 2010 Heroes Homecoming
HANSCOM AIR FORCE BASE, Mass. – Capt. Jarret Flexman (left) and his family are interviewed by WHDH-TV after the Heroes Homecoming event on June 25 in Memorial Park. Capt. Flexman was one of 38 Airmen who recently returned from deployment and their families honored during the ceremony. (U.S. Air Force photo by Rick Berry)
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Activities planned to honor military families

Posted 10/28/2010   Updated 10/28/2010 Email story   Print story


by Sarah Olaciregui
66th Air Base Group Public Affairs

10/28/2010 - HANSCOM AIR FORCE BASE, Mass. -- November marks National Military Family Month and organizations across the base are busy planning events to recognize, honor and support the many sacrifices military families make throughout the year.

According to the Armed Services YMCA website, the organization established Military Family Month in 1933. Since that time, the U.S. Government has recognized the occasion every year since.

Hanscom plans to observe this month with a variety of activities such parents' classes, dinners, informational sessions, a pool party, a new spouse orientation, family welcomes and much more.

"When husbands and wives, mothers and fathers or sons and daughters are deployed, their families show exceptional resilience and courage," said Dr. Sondra Albano, Airman and Family Readiness Center chief. "They provide love and encouragement during challenging duty-related separations. The activities offered this month honor the daily sacrifices made by military families everywhere and affirm that caring, compassion and pride in service are alive and well."

See the list below for information about National Military Family Month events on base. For further information, call the number listed with the event or 781-377-4222 to reach the A&FRC.

Activities and Events:

Building Resiliency in Children: A Parent's Guide, Nov. 3
From 10 to 11 a.m. look at the characteristics of resilient children and examine methods for building resilience by teaching coping skills, optimism, character building and more. The session is presented by Hanscom's Military and Family Life Consultant.

Youth Center Turkey Feast, Nov. 3
The feast will be held 12:45 to 1:30 p.m. at the Youth Center. Youth Center families are invited for lunch. Lunch is $3 per person and includes a meal, drink and dessert.

Preparing for Homecoming: Reunion Briefing for Spouses and Children, Nov. 3
There will be simultaneous sessions for spouses and children ages 6 and older from 3 to 4 p.m. For those anticipating a reunion with a service member within the next two months, two special briefings will help spouses and children prepare for the big event. In these interactive workshops, participants will receive practical suggestions for coping with reunion and reintegration, and the children's session will feature fun reunion activities and a personalized gift for the returning parent.

An IEP for My Child, Nov. 4
Every child with a disability who receives special education services must have an Individual Education Program. This workshop takes parents step-by-step through the development of the IEP including how to articulate a vision, use evaluations to write measurable annual goals and measure their child's progress. The workshop, which takes place from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. is presented by the Federation for Children with Special Needs.

Got the Holiday Spending Crazy Blues?, Nov. 4
From 12 noon to 12:30 p.m. attend a "workshop on the run" to gather ideas on how to conquer the "holiday spending crazies" without breaking the bank. Walk away with more confidence about sticking to a budget this year.

Community Family Pool Party, Nov. 6
The pool party takes place at the base pool from 12 noon to 3 p.m. For further information contact Russell Jackson at 781-377-2237.

Heart Link New Spouse Orientation, Nov. 8
From 1 to 4 p.m. new spouses will be welcomed to the military family. Heart Link is an orientation workshop for any spouse married six years or less to a service member from any branch of the armed services who wants to learn more about military life. The Heart Link program will provide essential information on to make life in the Air Force exciting, fulfilling and rewarding.

Hanscom Health Fair, Nov. 9
Meet health and wellness service providers, health insurance companies and receive some free giveaways from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Minuteman Club Ballroom.

One Small Change to Change your Life micro-seminar: A Thankful Family, Nov. 10
A simple family activity will be shown that will bring more meaning to Thanksgiving and bring families closer together. The micro-seminar takes place from 12 to 12:15 p.m.

Installation Commander's Welcome, Nov. 15
Welcome takes place from 8 a.m. to 12 noon. The official introduction to Hanscom AFB features essential base and local community information for new arrivals. Meet Hanscom agency representatives and learn what is new and what to expect. Receive the latest information and tips on living and working in New England.

Coping with Holiday Grief, Nov. 15
This presentation, from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m., discusses the impact grief has on the holidays and identifies healthy coping mechanisms. Ways to assist children in the grieving process and ideas on developing a plan for the holidays will be suggested. The session is presented by Hanscom's Military and Family Life Consultant.

Family Welcome, Nov. 16
The welcome is designed for newly arrived spouses, especially those with small children unable to attend the regular Commander's Welcome, interested in learning all about Hanscom AFB. Receive money saving tips and shopping information while learning about schools, recreation, local attractions, safety, security, education, employment and more. This is a fun, family-friendly event that takes place from 9:30 to 11 a.m.

"Not Home for the Holidays" Newcomers' Public Trasnportation and City Orientation, Nov. 17
Orientation takes place from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Newcomers and family members are invited to learn how to navigate the local public transportation system and obtain information on events and attractions. Ride into Boston using the "T." Cost is $4 for subway fares. This program is part of the community orientation for inprocessing. Newly arrived service members are not required to take leave to attend.

School Age Family Turkey Luncheon, Nov. 17
The luncheon takes place from 1 to 2 p.m. at the School Age Building. School Age families are invited to join in for the annual turkey luncheon. It's free for all enrolled children and their families. Sign up in advance at the School Age front desk.

PJ Story Time, Nov. 17
Kids ages 2 through 8 are invited to listen to a story and make a small craft while wearing their pajamas from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. at the Base Library. There is also a weekly Preschool Story Time on Nov. 3, 10 and 24 from 10:15 to 11:00 a.m.

Alice in Wonderland, Nov. 17 and 18
On Nov. 17 and 18, the Hanscom Middle School After Drama Program will present a musical production of "Disney's Alice in Wonderland Jr." The show features characters such as the white rabbit played by Daphne Alpar, the cheshire cat played by Emma Ferguson, the wise caterpillar played by Isabelle Smith, the queen of hearts played by Bennetter Hanson and Alice played by Elizabeth Prevatte. The show starts each night 6:30 p.m. and runs approximately 80 minutes with an intermission bake sale. There will be free admission for everyone and the play is suitable for all ages. For further information or questions, contact the Hanscom Middle School office at 781-274-7720.

Stress During the Holidays, Nov. 18
The holidays are ideally a time to celebrate and rejoice in family and friends, but some anticipate the season with dread rather than joy. Join Hanscom's Military and Family Life Consultant for a look at the causes of stress and some practical ideas on how to reduce holiday stress and find the joy in the season again from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

Hearts Apart "Giving Thanks" Potluck, Nov. 18
From 4 to 6 p.m. families of deployed, remote tour and extended TDY service members, are invited to a celebration of the season. Like the first Thanksgiving, all attendees may bring a dish to share with others and give thanks for our military family. The A&FRC will provide the ham and turkey. RSVP to the Airman and Family Readiness Center by Nov. 12 by calling 781-377-4222 or e-mailing 66.FSS.FSFR.CMB@hanscom.af.mil.

Stress Management and Coping with Strategies for Parents of Children with Special Needs, Nov. 29
Those caring for themselves as they are taking care of a child with special needs know it can be difficult at times. This workshop will discuss effective stress management strategies which will allow both the parent and child to cope successfully with daily and lifelong challenges. The workshop takes place from 12 noon to 1 p.m.

U.S. Troop Care Drive, Nov. 20 from 8 a.m. 12 noon at the Snow Barn.

Harvest Day at the Child Development Center, Nov. 24
Families of the Child Development Center are invited to join the children for a special holiday snack at 2 p.m. for infants and pre-toddler children and 2:30 p.m. for toddlers and preschool children.

Hanscom Just for Fun Chess Tournament and Cookout, Nov. 27
All ages are welcome to the Youth Center from 2 to 5 p.m. for a chess tournament and cookout. Youth under 9 years old must be accompanied by a parent or guardian. The cost for Chess Club members is free and non-Chess Club members is $3.

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