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Heart Link: Familiarizing spouses with military life

Schriever Air Force Base, Colorado, will host its 57th biannual Heart Link this year beginning in Building 20, event center, from 8 a.m. - 4 p.m. Oct. 12.Heart Link is an Air Force-wide spouse orientation program geared toward strengthening families and enhancing mission readiness. (U.S. Air Force Illustration by Staff Sgt. Matthew Coleman-Foster)

Schriever Air Force Base, Colorado, will host its 57th biannual Heart Link this year beginning in Building 20, event center, from 8 a.m. - 4 p.m. Oct. 12.Heart Link is an Air Force-wide spouse orientation program geared toward strengthening families and enhancing mission readiness. (U.S. Air Force Illustration by Staff Sgt. Matthew Coleman-Foster)

SCHRIEVER AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. --

Schriever Air Force Base, Colorado, will host its 57th biannual Heart Link this year beginning in Building 20, event center, from 8 a.m. - 4 p.m. Oct. 12.

Heart Link is an Air Force-wide spouse orientation program geared toward strengthening families and enhancing mission readiness.  

The Airman and Readiness Center has been the facilitator for all Heart Link orientations at Schriever AFB for over 16 years with the first one being held in the spring of 2002, and since then over 300 spouses attended at Schriever.

Angela Hernandez, chief of the A&FRC, said the purpose of the event is to increase spouse’s awareness of Air Force mission, customs, traditions, protocol and community resources that support Air Force families.

 “Heart Link helps spouses acclimate and feel they are an important part of the Air Force community,” Hernandez said. “Helps families be healthier physically, emotionally and spiritually. Achievement of these goals should help enhance personal and family readiness and increase retention,” she said.

Spouses also receive briefings from various helping agencies, including First Sergeants, The Airmen and Family Readiness Center, the 50th Space Wing Protocol Office, the 21st Medical Group, 50th Force Support Squadron, a Schriever Military and Family Life Consultant and more.

The spouses will also get to have lunch in the Satellite Dish dining facility with base leadership as well as a tour of the base.  

Heart Link started with working a group at Air Combat Command developed the program, and the first one took place at Langley Air Force Base, Virginia in 2000.

Today, there are currently individuals working at the A&FRC who participated in the first Heart Link at Schriever AFB.

Liz Archuletta, community readiness consultant with the A&FRC was one of those individuals. She said the event is always a great learning experience even then.

“Having worked for the Air Force for almost 17 years, I learned a lot about the military I had not known before,” she said.

Hernandez said even though the base and times have changed, one factor remains the same.

“The end goal is still the same. Strengthen military families, enhance mission readiness and increase spouse awareness of the Air Force mission,” she said. “However the format has changed to keep up with times.”

The event will conclude with a game in the event center, where participants will be quizzed on what they learned throughout the day, and offer up discussions about the different helping agencies.

Hernandez and Archuletta encourage spouses to sign up.

Free childcare is available. To sign up or register for childcare for the event, contact the A&FRC at 567-3920.

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