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Japan Engineer District Stands Up Inaugural SFRG

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers – Japan Engineer District (USACE JED) Headquarters stood up their first ever Soldier and Family Readiness Group (SFRG) lately at Camp Zama after having established officers and receiving approval for its customary working process (SOP), making it official.

The SFRG, established earlier this June, was created to help the staff and households of JED through fund elevating actions, occasions that encourage staff constructing, and morale boosting amongst The District’s engineers. Historically, SFRGs are command-sponsored applications utilized to bridge any gaps between active-duty items and their households by making certain an correct stream of command info reaches everybody in a series of command and assists in strengthening the work-life stability that many Soldiers and Department of Defense civilians endure.

“I’m excited about the JED SFRG which will replace our Civilian Welfare Council (CWC) as the main employee and family members organization to support morale and welfare events for the District,” stated U.S. Army Col. Gary Bonham, USACE JED’s Commander. “The great thing about SFRG’s is that they focus not just on our employees, but on our family members as well, so I see this as being more inclusive than the CWC and can’t wait to see what great events and opportunities that they will provide in the future for JED’s Army Family!”

Previously JED’s Zama Office operated a CWC comprised of native workers who, after being elected to workplace through well-liked vote, volunteered their time and efforts to offer JED with varied occasions and fund-raisers. After the worldwide pandemic, JED’s CWC was impacted very like the remainder of the world.

“COVID dramatically changed the work culture here. That had a tremendous impact on the CWC. When the work culture evolved, it became apparent that the CWC would need to as well,” stated Charlie Maib, JED’s Public Affairs Officer, and then-CWC president. “We evolved by dissolving and being reborn as an SFRG. The same tenants are there, the same spirit of helping others and giving back to your fellow Engineer, but in a much more streamlined, modern organization. The SFRG is the CWC for 2023 and beyond.”

With JED and their new SFRG reinvigorated exiting the pandemic, a brand new set of people stepped-up to start mending a few of what was misplaced within the close to 3-year timeframe that COVID-19’s devastation wrought, bringing with them a way of hope and vitality.

“I believe our SFRG will bring a great amount of involvement within JED, and for any families who are [already present] or [joining us in the future,]” stated Arjeta Boshti, JED’s SFRG lead, an architect for the District. “The goal is to provide our team here with an organization that can help them settle into life in Japan and get them involved with the amazing community we have with our Japanese co-workers and DoD civilians.”

No stranger to being part of a big staff, Boshti is bringing expertise from the Contingency Engineering Response Team and military-led workout routines like Citadel Gale to JED’s SFRG.

“Being part of teams and organizations that give to others is something that I truly enjoy and do with a lot of passion,” stated Boshti. “It’s also why I believe the SFRG at JED will be successful, by working together and aiding our team members and their families.”

Among among the upcoming occasions that JED’s SFRG has tentatively deliberate are an Oktoberfest celebration in Fall and assist with the District’s annual group day, the place staff members come collectively to have enjoyable, deliver meals and drinks, and play video games, amongst others.

But whereas internet hosting occasions like these listed above are a labor of affection, the SFRG by no means forgets that means behind its existence.

“Benevolent organizations like the CWC or the SFRG are important because they create a sense of family and togetherness. Traditionally in the Army, the SFRG created a sense of unity and caring for the families of deployed Soldiers – thus the Soldier and Family in the title,” added Maib. “Although our Engineers and other teammates might not be in combat, we’re still serving our country away from our loved ones back home in the States, and that can be tough at times. SFRGs in general, and our SFRG in particular, exists to ease that pain and be there for people whenever they need it, whatever they need. It’s Engineers having each other’s backs, in the greatest tradition of the Army spirit.”

Source: U.S.Army

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