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Same program, new opportunites

COLUMBUS AIR FORCE BASE, Miss. -- The next Heart Link social will be the first test run to present this program to spouses of new BLAZE Team members.
The program will still be free for enlisted and officer spouses new to Columbus AFB or who are experiencing Air Force life for the first time, but the program will be presented in a more interactive session.
"Although we have gotten great reviews on the previous version of the program, critiques indicated the need to get the valuable information to spouses when they first arrive instead of waiting for a program date" said Ms. Lee Chouinard, 14th Mission Support Squadron and Heart Link Emcee. Spouses will no longer have to wait for the bi-monthly Heart Link social section of the program to receive the Welcome Binder packed full of information that includes: the acclaimed AFRC's Air Force Spouse 101 Booklet, Life in the Air Force book and the Local Resources section.
In the binder, participants will be find "anything and everything you need to know here at Columbus, and most of the info can be transferred and used at another base as well. You can also find information on LES, deployments, finance and Tri-Care," said Chouinard. "There is also information from helping agencies on base. There is a will worksheet, financial aide, information on the intergrated delivery system, safety and tornados. Pretty much the things you first need to know when coming to Mississippi."
The AFRC will be handing out the binders every Wednesday at the Magnolia Inn from 10 to 11 a.m. Binders will also be made available through the Officer Spouse Club, Spouses of Stripes Club, during Newcomers orientations and in the AFRC. Along with the binder, spouses receive a special invitation to attend the updated interactive Heart Link Social to meet others, ask questions, participate in interactive activities, have a free lunch and share in the opportunity to win door prizes.
"One of the most entertaining events is an activity to determine who in the group will be designated as the 'Super Spouse' and they will win an extra special prize" said Chouinard.
To culminate the event, Col. Dave Gerber, 14th Flying Training Wing commander, and his wife Mrs. Louisa Gerber will be teaching the "Grip and Grin" tradition and presenting the participants with an official Air Education and Training Command Heart Link coin. While Colonel Gerber presents each participant with this speacil coin, Mrs. Gerber will explain to them the significance of the tradition of the coin.
The next Heart Link Social is scheduled for April 11 and will take place from 9:15 a.m. to noon at the Airman and Family Readiness Center, but seats are limited and participants must sign up by Monday. For more information about getting a Spouse Heart Link Welcome Binder or to sign up for this special welcome social, call 434-2790 or 434-2631.