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130th Airlift Wing Opens new Airman Readiness Center

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Kaden Salmons
  • 130th Airlift Wing

MCLAUGHLIN AIR NATIONAL GUARD BASE, WV -- A ribbon cutting ceremony for the new 130th Airlift Wing Airman Readiness Center (ARC) was held on June 3, 2023, at McLaughlin Air National Guard Base, W.Va.

The ceremony marked the first time all of the wing's helping agencies were conveniently located in one building.

"It's more of a cohesive working group because we all work with each other, we're now in a central location, and it helps us better equip Airmen with the resources they need," said Melinda Himstedt, 130th Airlift Wing Director of Psychological Health (DPH). "We're all together working for the same thing: helping our Airmen and their families."

In addition to the DPH, the ARC will house the Sexual Assault Response Coordinator, the Airman, and Family Readiness Program Manager, and the Wing Chaplain's Office. The helping agencies in the same building will provide a one-stop shop for help-seeking Airmen safely and privately.

"We want this to be a safe place where people feel comfortable coming in," said Beth Melton, Airman, and Family Readiness Program Manager. "We would love for more people to come to see us, whether they come to talk about something important or just want to stop in and say hello."

The building once belonged to the Security Forces Squadron Combat Arms Training and Maintenance (CATM). Security Force's responsiveness to change and willingness to relocate was vital in getting the project off the ground. Additionally, Civil Engineering Squadron worked countless hours to plan and revitalize the space by adding a handful of offices, building restrooms, and fixing the ventilation.

This upgrade marks a milestone for improving Airmen and their families' morale and overall wellness in the unit.

"We all struggle from time to time," said Col. Patrick Chard, the 130th Vice Wing Commander." We hope that Airmen will utilize this new facility to get after the four pillars of readiness."

The four pillars of readiness are; mental, physical, social, and spiritual.