Colorado Springs Military Newspaper Group

Peterson Space Observer

Wingman day time to refresh, build teams

By Capt. Dena Burke

21st Space Wing Judge Advocate office

PETERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. — To maintain resiliency, we must pause to refresh, reflect and get away from the normal day-to-day workload. Wingman day is a wonderful opportunity to take the much needed break, build camaraderie, discuss issues of concern, and strengthen individual and unit health.

In November 2011, the 21st Space Wing had a successful wingman day, and in January 2012, a resiliency day. It is from these days that we build our strength and lay the foundation for future successes. All Air Force Space Command units will complete their own fall 2012 wingman day by Nov. 15.

The 21st Space Wing’s wingman day is Nov. 2. The commander’s intent is to maximize the benefit of a down day by providing a general outline, readily available reference materials and standardized feedback opportunities. The guidelines for the wingman day are intended to give 21st SW units maximum flexibility in planning the day’s events and tailoring it to their needs.

The guidance for wingman day was sent out to units in September. The day should focus on developing a healthier lifestyle, the pillars of wellness, and positive behavior. The guidance for wingman day and other useful resources are available on the SharePoint website and can be used by units to plan a successful event.

Before wingman day, commanders are to ensure that individuals in the unit complete a support and resilience inventory. The SRI is a tool to gauge the resilience level of individuals and then tailor unit events based on the feedback. After a commander takes into account the SRI feedback, he or she then has much discretion in creating the day’s events. The SRI will be sent to the wing personnel by email.

The default uniform for wingman day is ABUs, but this may be revised to PT or civilian clothes. The location is also at the liberty of the unit commander, and wingman day events may be on-base or off-base. However, the entire duty day must be used, and there may be no early dismissal.

On wingman day, the unit commander sets the tone by providing opening comments at the beginning of the day. Afterward, the rest of the day may happen in any order. It is recommended that during the day, the unit be divided into small groups to focus on the pillars of wellness. There should also be team building exercises, such as a barbecue, sports competition, board games or other events. Families or spouses may also be invited to participate in some of the day’s activities.

Units are encouraged to share ideas, resources, and plans for wingman day. The wingman day POC has the ability to upload a unit’s plan and agenda on the 21st SW wingman day SharePoint website, enabling units to view each other’s wingman day plans. By sharing plans, each unit can build upon other ideas and shape a plan that will address the unit’s unique social, spiritual, physical and mental needs.

The 21st SW wingman day SharePoint page can be accessed by contacting Capt. Dena Burke, 21st SW/JA, the wing POC for the fall 2012 wingman day. For information or to share your unit’s wingman day agenda, contact her at 556-4871 or dena.burke.1@us.af.mil.

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