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News > Maxwell key spouses complete crisis intervention training
Maxwell key spouses complete crisis intervention training

Posted 4/4/2014   Updated 4/4/2014 Email story   Print story


by Donovan Jackson
42nd Air Base Wing Public Affairs

4/4/2014 - MAXWELL AIR FORCE BASE, Ala.  -- Created as a means to equip key spouses with specialized training to better engage in crisis situations, Maxwell's crisis intervention training program held a graduation ceremony March 18 for its first class of 19 graduates.

The program was created by Daphne O'Hair, a domestic abuse victim advocate at the base Family Advocacy Program for key spouses in an effort to refine their interpersonal skills when dealing with traumatic and crisis events.

"I created the program to help professionalize the way key spouses engage in traumatic situations," said O'Hair. "Key spouses have always been good at using the necessary emotional tools needed to provide the best help to their units. Adding this specialized training to their tool box is essential when wanting to provide better help during a crisis."

The program was taught in five blocks that divided the 11-hour program. Course work included classroom assignments, role-playing situations, educational videos and key spouse testimonials.

"Some of the subjects discussed in the class were very personal to the spouses," said Andrew Tveit, Airman and Family Readiness Center consultant. "There were times in each class where someone cried, due to how personal the topics were."

Some of the main focus points of the program taught spouses how to better manage situations involving death, grief and suicide.

"Crisis comes in many forms," said O'Hair. "A colicky baby can be a trauma, or a car accident, a deployment and even a PCS. Each person will handle situations differently, and this program will ensure key spouses are equipped to handle them the most effective way possible."

According to Tveit, key spouses must always be prepared to handle a crisis as people will seek them out first in time of need.

"Key spouses can be the first line of defense when talking with families in time of crisis," said Tveit. "These classes are extremely important for the key spouses because saying or doing the right thing during a crisis or traumatic event can have lasting positive effects."

O'Hair believes the program will prove beneficial to the key spouses based off conversations she has had with spouses in the program.

"During the training, a key spouse approached me and told me about a dilemma she was facing," she said. "She mentioned that she was going to respond to it one way, but had thought about her training and the techniques she learned. Then she proceeded to implement the newly learned tactics instead."

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