New sponsorship program helps keep youth informed

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Devin M. Rumbaugh
  • 86th Airlift Wing Public Affairs

Moving to a new duty station can be an exhausting experience for all members of a family. The service member is often given a sponsor to aide with the transition, but oftentimes the move can be even more stressful to the children in the family. For that reason, the 86th Force Support Squadron developed the new youth sponsorship program.

The new program is designed to help teens and pre-teens get a head start on what to expect at a new place, by communicating with others their age at the new place the family is moving to.

The program helps connect the sponsors to the sponsees prior to their arrival, so they can get answers to questions about school, teachers, youth program activities, cultural experiences, and other aspects of living in the Kaiserslautern Military Community.

The program takes teen and pre-teen volunteers involved with the Ramstein or Vogelweh youth and teen centers.

“The YSP can be a lot of fun and a way to meet others that you might not meet otherwise,” Ruth Radloff, 86th Force Support Squadron youth programs and school age care manager. “Sponsors get to know the new youth and help them get settled.”

The program also helps reduce social-emotional stressors and allows the youth to focus their energy on academic success.

“A specific impact is seen in high school seniors moving mid semester, who now find themselves surrounded by peers and staff who provide assistance in scholarship writing and college applications process,” said Andrea Hoover, 86th FSS Vogelweh youth programmer. “This a crucial part of a young person’s life as they transition into adulthood.”

Youth sponsors also gain valuable job skills as they foster communication, leadership, and a sense of responsibility working with incoming youth.

For more information, or to volunteer for the program, please contact the program specialist or teen coordinators at the Ramstein and Vogelweh youth and teen centers at:

Ramstein Pre-Teens:  DSN 480-6444 or commercial 06371-47-6444, Danielle Stacks

Ramstein Teens:  DSN 480-3099 or commercial 06371-47-3099, Angela Roberts

Vogelweh Pre-Teens DSN 489-6504 or commercial 0631-536-6504, Andrea Hoover

Vogelweh Teens:  DSN 489-6155 or commercial 0631-536-6155, DeeDee Bailey