Forum gives voice to community concerns, prioritizes list for submission to AFMC

  • Published
  • By Wayne Crenshaw
  • 78 ABW/PA
After-hours and after-school child care were among a range of issues discussed last week at Horizon's by about 125 participants in the base's first Caring for People Forum.

The group of Airmen, civilians and family members spent an entire day discussing quality of life issues. They also voted on a list of issues to submit to Air Force Materiel Command - and possibly to the Air Force - for consideration, including funding.

One of the issues discussed was the possibility of extending the operating hours of the Child Development Center. A suggestion was made to provide 24-hour childcare.

Maj. Gen. Robert McMahon, Center commander, attended the forum's out-briefing. He said funding for 24-hour childcare is not likely in the current budget climate but extending hours could be a possibility, if there is enough interest.

Lesley Darley, Robins' Integrated Delivery System co-chair, said all issues from the event will be addressed, not just those submitted to AFMC. Some can be addressed both locally and without additional funding, she said.

For example, parents asked whether the Houston County school buses could drop children off at the Youth Center in the afternoons, rather than in housing, where parents may not be home. Darley said that may only take some discussions with the school system.

Darley said similar forums are being conducted at all bases, at the direction of the Air Force, which wants to hear directly from the people being served. The forum will be an annual event, she said.