The Eastern New Mexico News - Serving Clovis, Portales and the Surrounding Communities

Program offer airmen, families counseling services

 

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Relationship problems, financial difficulties or upcoming deployments are all brush fires airmen and their families face these days. And if these emotional “fires” don’t get put out, quality of life and job performance begin to suffer.

The Military and Family Life Consultant program provides airmen another tool to help them cope with the increased tempo of military life and its accompanying challenges. This free program is also available to retirees, base employees and their family members as well.

MFLC is DoD funded and provides licensed therapists to help servicemembers and their families address these and other issues in a confidential setting.

Brian McDonald is a MFLC at Cannon who emphasizes the confidentiality provided to his clients during their sessions. Clients can now have up to 12 separate appointments, double the original six when the program first began.

“We keep no written records,” said McDonald. “A person can call me on my phone 693-3140 to speak to me. They don’t have to identify who they are.”

McDonald has also provided his services at Luke and Malmstrom Air Force bases, and after his 45-day stay here, will travel to bases in Europe to continue the federal program.

The consultants’ roles are unique in that they do not work as traditional therapists. Their primary role is to assess needs and work with their clients to develop a plan to address an issue.

Assisting their clients and confidentiality are two important elements the MFLC program offers, said Cynthia Friday-Allison, Airman and Family Readiness Center chief. Many of the issues they address with their clients are those things that can be resolved during the 12 sessions.

“If we encounter more serious problems such as severe depression, we will work to provide our clients additional resources,” said Mc Donald. “We are not here to replace any of the services that exist on base. We would simply like to bridge some of the possible gaps, especially if there is hesitation (because of confidentiality issues) in accessing those other services.”

Consultants are experienced, masters-level social workers, psychologists and marriage and family therapists. Though the individuals may change, the program will remain constant here.

To contact Cannon’s current Military and Family Life consultant directly, call (575) 693-3140.

 
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