AFMC Key Spouse program connects units, families Published June 29, 2021 By Kayla Prather Air Force Materiel Command WRIGHT-PATTERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Ohio -- The Key Spouse Program plays an integral role in Air Force Materiel Command by tying together families, civilian employees and Airmen to enhance the readiness and resiliency of the Air Force. “The Air Force Key Spouse Program is an official program designed to enhance readiness, personal and family resiliency, and to establish a sense of Air Force community,” said Jennifer Treat, Chief of Integrated Prevention and Resilience, Air Force Materiel Command. “Key Spouses are commander-appointed and serve as a vital resource to command teams in an effort to support Air Force personnel and their families.” The overall vision of the Key Spouse Program is to increase resiliency and unit cohesion throughout the military life cycle. By including the family unit, the program aims to ensure families feel supported and are connected to the Air Force community through awareness of resources, events and more. The key spouse role is typically filled by a volunteer from the unit who is trained to be a resource and liaison between the unit, installation and family. Training typically includes information on base and Air Force resiliency resources, community offerings, communication tactics and more, ensuring the volunteer key spouses are ready and able to execute their supporting role. Treat shared how the AFMC Key Spouse Program operates the same as other programs in the Air Force, but what makes it standout is the emphasis placed on incorporating civilian employees and their families into the program’s scope. With a large number of civilian Airmen at AFMC, it is critical that their families feel supported as a part of the AFMC family. “The military lifestyle can present a variety of life challenges. Through the Key Spouse Program, we are providing our families with tools that will impact their ability to face these head-on,” said Treat. Key Spouses specialize in promoting efficient and effective communication between unit leadership. They also help establish and build unit resilience and a sense of community. This can include-but is not limited to-providing network and training opportunities, connecting with families to verify information and providing families with information on installation and community events. “It also provides an opportunity to further emphasize that the definition of family is larger than those you are related to. This program establishes the importance each of us play in our roles as part of the Air Force family and builds the connections that last a lifetime,” said Treat. For information on Key Spouse Programs at their local centers or installations, Airmen and civilians can contact their unit leadership and the local Airman and Family Readiness Center for details.