B2B doesn’t help Guardsmen anymore: WRONG!
While our mission began with the ARNG, it has since expanded into Michigan communities at large, enabling us to reach Veterans of all branches, all eras. We have ADDED to our mission, not replaced it. We remain at the ready to support any and all National Guard Soldiers who need assistance.
B2B is only for Soldiers who have deployed: WRONG!
The op tempo over the past two decades meant that there was a “new normal” for Guardsmen. They became accustomed to deploying, active duty-style, with Brigade-sized elements, in rapid succession and with minimal dwell time. Transition between deployments and civilian life was obvious during these times.
However, transitions continue for our Guardsmen, even as the op tempo slows. Unlike their active duty counterparts, most Guardsmen have to balance military orders with both civilian employment and family obligations. Others have the additional challenge of going back to school. Transition stress is common and consistent in the National Guard. B2B Volunteers are essential in helping navigate during these times when no one expects stressors to persist.
B2B is unwelcome in ARNG units: WRONG!
Embedded B2B Volunteers and Ann Arbor staff are working tirelessly to reestablish relationships in units that have been underserved, and to educate new commanders on the importance of B2B supporting their soldiers. B2B supplements the good work the commanders, senior NCOs and ARNG programs are doing, and we can continue to support Soldiers as they transition to civilian life.
The photo here was taken during a conversation with BG Estrada this past weekend. He gets it. I was happy to do most of the listening; he wanted to tell me he understands the importance of B2B Volunteers supporting his soldiers. He committed to working with his junior officers to help them understand that B2B is value-added, especially when they have issues they’re not comfortable discussing with their first-line supervisors. He understands that combat is not the only trigger for suicidal ideation among his troops. He encouraged us to keep spreading the word about the support we offer throughout uniformed service and beyond.
What’s the bottom line?
We are reinvigorating our role with ARNG Soldiers, and we are looking for Volunteers who want to serve in a unit assignment
. There are armories around the state, and there is likely one only a short drive from your home.
Call or e-mail the office to let us know you are interested. We will work with you on understanding requirements, working with your Platoon Sergeants to find a fitting assignment. Leadership will attend your first drill with you to ensure a smooth introduction.
Thank you for considering service to those still in uniform through a unit assignment opportunity!