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NEWS | Jan. 8, 2014

JBLE services help to fuel a fit 2014

By Airman 1st Class Victoria H. Taylor 633rd Air Base Wing Public Affairs

With the passing of 2013, Service members can look forward to new opportunities in 2014. For many, ringing in the new year means beginning resolutions and kicking bad habits to the curb.

Whether making healthier decisions, improving finances or promising to volunteer, JBLE offers programs for Service members to start 2014 on the right foot.


If "kicking the habit" of tobacco is at the top of the list, the Health and Wellness Center, located in the Shellbank Fitness Center at Langley Air Force Base, offers a smoking cessation class to support both Airmen and Soldiers, dependents, retirees and contractors in their pledge to put down the tobacco pipe.

"The class doesn't concentrate on how bad tobacco use is for you," said Jennifer Jacobs, 633rd Medical Group clinical pharmacist practitioner. "It focuses on behavior and lifestyle modification to successfully quit, and more importantly, stay tobacco-free."

The HAWC teamed up with the American Lung Association and created a program in which class participants may attend a one-hour seminar on smoking cessation. To promote continuing the healthy behavior they learn.

Jacobs said once the course is over, participants then call the ALA once a week for 12 weeks to track their progress with a professional, the results of which are then e-mailed to the HAWC.

"Being a quitter in this respect is positive," said Jacobs. "Service members can finally part ways with one of the hardest habits to quit -- tobacco use, with a little help of course."

For some Service members, shaking the tobacco habit can be a difficult road to travel alone, but thanks to resources available at JBLE, tobacco users can stop the use of tobacco.


Whether trying to pay off debt or prepare for retirement, and the New Year is the perfect time to start financial planning. The Airman and Family Readiness Center at Langley and the Army Community Service Center at Fort Eustis offers many programs to assist in getting out of debt, starting a saving plan or both.

"The AFRC staff is here to help," said Maureen Elam, AFRC personal finance manager. "We are able to provide a spending plan that Service members can fill out themselves, but we suggest coming into the AFRC so we can guide you through the steps."

The AFRC and ACS provide services to help members understand their finances and information on lifestyle changes to improve. Both also assist members by providing free credit reports and scores.

"By providing the one-on-one counseling, Service members gain a very good idea on where they stand financially." said Paul Walker, Army Community Service Center financial readiness program manager. "We take everyone's situation seriously. Everything is confidential and we are here to help, not to judge."


As the holiday fever dies down, some Service members may find themselves with more free time. A beneficial way to use that time may be volunteering in the local community.

"There are many benefits to volunteering," said Michelle Venzke, AFRC community relations specialist. "Service members and dependents have the chance to develop not only a professional network while volunteering, but also make friends while learning more about Langley and life in the Air Force."

Venzke said there are numerous base agencies that utilize volunteers other than the AFRC. The Airman's Attic, American Red Cross, Langley Chapel, Langley Hospital, Sexual Assault Office, the Thrift Shop and Youth Sports are always looking for members to assist.

According to Donna Cloy, Army Volunteer Corp coordinator, Fort Eustis Soldiers have the comfort of utilizing the USO, the transportation museum and other facilities located on post.

While juggling work and family life, it can be difficult to find time to volunteer, but both the AFRC and Army Volunteer Corps can help, added Venzke.

"Busy families with children can research opportunities in the local area to see if there are family volunteer opportunities," said Venzke. "Free childcare that is paid for by the Air Force Aid Society is available while the parent volunteers."

The opportunities to volunteer do not stop at the border of JBLE. Off base opportunities can be found by referrals.

"The program on post will work with Service members specific schedules," said Cloy. "The ACV can provide off post opportunities in the community schools around the area and boy and girl scouts of America troops."

JBLE offers many different services and tools to widen the arsenal for those trying to live a better and healthier 2014. Although results may not happen overnight, those who are setting goals have many assets to help them throughout the year.