The Air Force Aid Society supports the mission of the Air Force by relieving the financial distress of service members and their families with educational assistance and through proactive programs. Below are the various programs Air Force Aid Society offers:
Education Programs: The General Henry H. Arnold Education Grant Program provides up to $4000 in grants for college education for Air Force family members. Applications can be submitted online: www.afas.org.
- Interest-free loans/grants are available for:
- Basic Living Expenses
- Emergency Travel
- Essential Car Repair
- Natural Disasters
- Dependent Funerals
- Pay or Allotment Problems
- Medical/Dental expenses not covered by TRICARE
- Falcon Loans
Air Force Aid Society’s Community Enhancement Programs: Bundles for Babies: This Air Force Aid Society (AFAS) sponsored program offers an educational class for Active Duty Air Force members and their spouses. This class is facilitated by the Family Advocacy Nurse Specialists (FANS) and is geared towards new parents. The AFAS provides each participant with a $50 gift card to be used at the Base Exchange to purchase items for the expectant mother or for their new baby.
To Apply for Air Force Aid Assistance please visit: AFAS.org or call (703) 972-2650
Child Care for PCS Program for Family Care Providers: Active duty members on a Permanent Change of Station (PCS) move and members on retirement orders who need hourly care. Care will be provided at the local CDC or the child and youth centers based on space availability. A copy of PCS orders is required to receive a certificate. Members can obtain a Certificate of Eligibility from the M&FRC.
Give Parents a Break: The Air Force Aid Society (AFAS) recognizes that Air Force families are subject to unique stresses due to the nature of military life – deployments, remote tours of duty, extended working hours, etc. This program is offered twice monthly (first and third Saturday) for the purpose of allowing families a few hours break from the stresses of parenting. Families may use this time to suit their personal needs. Families are given certificates to use the program for a specific time. Contact the local CDC for dates and times.
Respite Care: This program is offered to active duty Air Force families with a family member(s) enrolled in the EFMP program. The goal of the program is to provide a “break” for a few hours a week/month to families who have the responsibility of 24 hours-a-day care for an ill/disabled family member. AFAS assistance for respite is based on need — the need for respite time.
Remembering, Honoring, Connecting… Always a part of the Air and Space Force Family.
Air Force Families Forever (AFFF) is a long-term survivor program established to provide support to family members of deceased Regular Air Force, U.S. Space Force, and Reserve Component Airmen who died in an Active Duty, Inactive Duty for Training (IDT), or Annual Training (AT) status and whose relationship was established prior to the Airman or Guardian’s death. Next of Kin (NOK): widow or widower (remarried or not), each parent (mother, father, stepmother, stepfather, mother through adoption, father through adoption, foster parents who stood in loco parentis), each child (natural, step-children, adopted), and each sibling (brother, sister, half-brother, half-sister, step-sibling) of an Airman or Guardian.
The Air Force Casualty Services Program’s primary goals are to provide prompt, accurate reporting, dignified and humane notification, and efficient, thorough, and compassionate assistance to the next of kin for as long as needed. The Casualty Assistance Representative (CAR) works closely with commanders at all levels to ensure the success of the program. The CAR works closely with survivors of retired Air Force members to ensure potential benefits are applied in a timely manner. The CAR provides limited casualty service to members of sister services, certain foreign nationals, and civilians.
Survivor Benefit Plan (SBP): Military pay stops when a member dies. The SBP is a government program, which makes it possible for retiring members to ensure that after their death, their eligible survivors receive a portion of their military retired pay in the form of monthly annuities and VA benefits. The SBP was structured so that a surviving spouse cannot outlive the annuity, and it has Cost-of-Living Adjustments (COLAs) incorporated so the annuity increases with inflation. An active duty member who has eligible dependents is automatically covered by SBP at the maximum level at no cost to the member while he/she remains on active duty. Prior to retiring, each member must decide whether to continue SBP coverage into retirement. The retired pay of those members who elect to participate is reduced by monthly premiums. The SBP is a unique plan: Government-subsidized premiums deducted from a participating member’s retired pay before taxes. SBP is the sole means for a member to continue a portion of their military retired pay to their eligible survivors. If a member chooses (with the concurrence of their spouse) not to participate in the SBP, an annuity cannot be paid.
Casualty/SBP Questions: Do you have a casualty or SBP question you wish someone could answer for you? Your M&FRC at Sheppard AFB can help. One-on-one casualty/SBP counseling is available to all military members at Sheppard AFB. Do not have time to come, just email us your casualty or SBP questions. We will research and respond to your questions within three business days. Most questions answered within 24 hours.
Provides training and information to support the customer in achieving short and long-term employment, education/training, and career goals. Provides skills development workshops (resumes, interviewing, LinkedIn), local labor market information, employment trend tracking, skills and interests’ identification, linkages to alternatives to paid employment (e.g. volunteerism and education)
EFMP-FS is a community support program for military family members with special needs and is offered by all branches of the services. EFMP-Family Support is the community support function provided by M&FRCs to enhance the quality of life of special needs family members. It is all-encompassing and includes DoD military, DoD civilians, Air Force Reserve, Air National Guard, retirees, spouses of deployed members, contractors and personnel from other military branches of service.
There are many circumstances where EFMP-FS can provide support: information fairs, school assistance, training for parents, or relocation. If your child is struggling in school with tests and needs extra time due to a disability, we'll help you understand Section 504 or the Individualized Education Program (IEP), which ensures educational accommodations. There are many programs through TriCare ECHO and benefits that you should be aware of. The EFMP-FS will ensure that you will be transitioned into a base that has all the support your family requires.
If you have any questions, we are happy to assist you with information and referrals in the local area. Additional classes are available upon request through the Military and Family Readiness Center.
Assists service members and their families in managing the challenges of deployments and separations before, during, and after they occur. Personal and Family Readiness offers the following programs:
Pre-deployment Briefing: Mandatory briefing for the military member (spouses encouraged to attend) covering, Red Cross, services for families during deployment, AFAS services, and overview of handouts.
Reunion Workshop: Mandatory briefing for the military member (spouses encouraged to attend). This class covers the stress of reunion on the family; communication challenges that can occur, and the truth about expectations for those returning from deployment. Post-deployment workshop features briefings by: M&FRC, Mental Health, Chaplain, Sexual Assault Response Coordinator, Family Advocacy and the Military Family Life Counselor (MFLC).
Hearts Apart Program: Open to immediate family members who have a loved one currently deployed, on a remote tour or TDY. Allows deployed family members to network and interact with fellow families.
Provides information, education, and one-on-one financial counseling to assist members and families maintain financial readiness. Services are designed to address money management issues throughout a service member’s military life cycle. Financial readiness educational opportunities ranges from setting up a simple budget to understanding long-term investment options.
Enriches and improves the quality of individual and family life at Sheppard by providing the knowledge and skills needed for everyday living, relating to others, coping with life events, easing adaptation to the military lifestyle. Personal & Work Life offers the following program:
Heart Link Spouse Orientation: An orientation program designed for those who are newly married or just interested in learning more about the Air Force Life. The overall goal of the program is to ensure that spouses are aware of their importance to the Air Force, and feel as though they are a part of the Air Force team. Information is given about community resources, TRICARE, deployments, and more. This program is offered quarterly. For more information and to learn the class dates, contact the Military & Family Readiness Center.
The Relocation Assistance mission is to eliminate the stress associated with frequent moves by providing moving assistance planning, inbound and outbound relocation services and on-going relocation workshops.
This Newcomer’s Orientation program is the Wing Commander’s program to welcome newcomers to Sheppard. Right Start is held once each month. Right Start is mandatory for military members and DoD civilians. Spouses are cordially invited to attend. Military members will be scheduled for Right Start by the MPF or CCS.
The M&FRC Relocation Program is here to support Sponsors and Command Support Staff who are charged with managing and monitoring the unit level Sponsorship Program. The first step to becoming a successful Sponsor is taking the e-sponsorship application training (eSAT). This is a Department of Defense training, is mandated for all new Sponsors and Sponsors who have not taken the eSAT training within the year prior to a new Sponsorship assignment. Training certificates must be submitted to your unit Command Support Staff for unit Sponsorship Program record keeping. In addition to offering the Sponsorship training, this site provides Sponsors with information on the MilitaryInstallations and Plan My Move websites. It also provides a sample welcome letter, a Sponsorship duty checklist, and a Newcomer and Family needs assessment, which should be tailored to fit the needs of the inbound member and their Family.
PCS Brief/Remote Tour Briefing:
Relocating from Sheppard AFB? Whether this is your first PCS or your fifth, the relocation manager can help guide you through the steps to a smooth move.
Assists service members and their families with preparing for PCS assignments overseas or stateside. Representatives from the Military & Family Readiness Center, Tricare, Housing, Finance & Transportation Management Office provide necessary information for planning your upcoming PCS.
On November 21, 2011, the president signed the Veterans Opportunity to Work (VOW) to Hire Heroes Act which made service members' participation in the Transition Assistance Program mandatory. TAPGPS is provided through the Military and Family Readiness Center to assist Service Members and their dependents when they separate/retire from the military. The current mandatory components include:
Pre-Separation Counseling: The first step to ensure all separating service members are informed of the transition services, resources, and benefits available. This is a prerequisite before attending the 3-Day GPS Workshop. Start the process 1 year out for separatees and 2 years for retirees.
Transition Goals, Plans, Success Workshop: (3 days) – Consists of (1) DoD Military Occupational Crosswalk, Finances & Resilience (2) Veterans Affairs Benefits Briefing (3) Department of Labor Employment Workshop
Capstone – One-on-one counseling to verify Career Readiness Standards are met (verification of resume, 12-month post-separation budget, ITP, GAP Analysis A&B, Continuum of Service counseling, DOL Gold Card, and eBenefits registration). M&FRC and Commander Signature required.