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Strong Bonds

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The Indiana Army National Guard’s Strong Bonds program helps soldiers and their families build, strengthen, preserve and restore strong relationships by teaching skills that are useful in the military and in life. These skills include relationships, communication, conflict resolution, resiliency and teamwork. The chaplain-led relationship training is conducted in a retreat format, where soldiers and their families can “get away” in order to focus on their relationships. Training events are relaxed, fun, engaging and discussion-based. These events are open to any eligible soldier, whether married, dating or single. Strong Bonds events take place across Indiana and are FREE to attend (transportation to and from the events is not included).

Types of Programs: The ABC's of Relationship Training

  • Alpha – 4 hour events. These events, primarily geared for the single soldier and for couples, focus on a specific theme and include a great meal. We like to choose a venue where you can continue to enjoy time together with friends or your spouse. The focus is on empowering the individual soldier to balance the stresses of military life while finding and building a healthy relationship that can last a lifetime. For couples, the half day focuses on one segment of our weekend training. Couples work on a specific area of their relationship to strengthen it and prepare the relationship to endure the many challenges of military life.
  • Bravo – 8 hour events. These events, geared for single soldiers, couples and families, allow soldiers and their families to learn together and take home ideas to incorporate into their daily lives. The venues selected help promote couple and family fun time during and after the event, and the ideas they take home can enrich and strengthen them as individuals and as a family unit.
  • Charlie – 12 hour events. These events, geared for couples and families, provide training to strengthen relationships, inspire hope and rekindle marriages. Whether you’re celebrating one year of marriage or 20, this training will have something for you. You’ll get quality time with your family through fun events and evening activities located at retreat centers and hotels.

Strong Bonds Components 

  • Strong Bonds for Singles. With three different curricula, we offer events that focus on resilience and becoming a more effective leader to healthy relationships and learning how others can shape our lives.
  • Strong Bonds for Married Couples. We have six different sets of materials to help couples strengthen the marital bond and to give couples the tools and information they need for better communication and relationship building.
  • Strong Bonds for Families. Using three curricula, our facilitators help teach effective communication and listening skills to parents and children and build parental skills to help care for and manage children. Note: Children are active participants in all Strong Bonds for Families Retreats.
  • Strong Bonds for Families of Deployed. Provides tools to enable families not just to survive, but to thrive in the midst of their soldier’s deployment. Note: Children are active participants in all Strong Bonds for Families of Deployed training events.
  • Strong Bonds for Pre-Deployment. Provides modules identifying unique challenges that single soldiers, married couples and Army families will face, and planning how they will manage their relationships through the stress of pre-deployment.
  • Strong-Bonds for Reintegration. Provides tools to assist soldiers and their families with issues pertaining to the transition from the battlefield to the home front, as family members adjust to disrupted routines and challenges of reconnection.

Eligibility

Title 10, Chapter 88, Section 1789 and paragraph 16-6e AR 165-1 (Annex F) states the authority for participation in chaplain-led events:

Active Duty Soldiers, Reserve Component (ARNG and USAR) Soldiers in an active status, and their immediate family members are eligible to participate in Strong Bonds training events.

“Immediate family members” means: 1) The member’s spouse or 2) Any child of the member as described in 10 USC 1072, subparagraph (2)(D) and subparagraph (6).

No authority exists for Department of the Army (DA) civilians to participate in the Strong Bonds program.

Strong Bonds is a U.S. Army program authorized and funded to provide support to soldiers and their families; attendance at Strong Bonds events is restricted to soldiers and Army families.

Contact

Strong Bonds Action Officer:

  • Phone: 317-247-3300 ext. 87669
  • Email: inarngstrongbonds@gmail.com

Join our Facebook page:

Information about events: Strong Bonds Facebook

Program Highlights and Benefits

  • Free lodging for Charlie events
  • Optional childcare with a certified childcare agency
  • Up to five meals paid
  • Take-home materials
  • Meeting other military individuals and families
  • Event locations throughout the state of Indiana