By Airman 1st Class Jonathan Whitely | Peterson-Schriever Garrison Public Affairs
PETERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. — The 21st Medical Readiness Flight Family Advocacy Program offers assistance to expecting and new parents through their New Parent Support Program.
“Our mission is to make sure our folks on base are getting the support they need,” said 1st Lt. Ryan Barney, 21st Operational Medical Readiness flight FAP officer and New Parent Support Program supervisor. “When it comes to expecting a baby, it’s always stressful. We want to make sure families have the resources and support that they need to ultimately prevent any sort of maltreatment.”
The program is free and offered to anyone with a valid ID card who has access to the clinic.
The program also offers lactation, nutrition and stress management classes. Additionally, it provides guidance on how parents can better bond with their children.
“[We’re] going to give parents the necessary skills, information and tools to go through their pregnancies and deliveries,” said Betina Hicks, New Parent Support Program nurse manager.
Children must be under the age of three for parents to qualify for the program. The parents can be adoptive, foster or biological.
“If you feel like you’re being supported, have resources and you have people you can turn to [for] the help that you need — that risk is really mitigated,” Barney said.
Despite the on-going COVID-19 pandemic, the New Parent Support Program is still operating. In order to protect the health and wellness of its employees and customers, they’ve begun doing appointments over the phone or virtually.
“Do not be afraid of family advocacy,” Hicks said. “Reach out. You can get so many new tools for your toolbox to be a better person, parent or partner.”
To schedule an appointment with the New Parent Support Program, call 719-556-8943.