HILL AIR FORCE BASE – Hill AFB Airmen have an opportunity to build community relationships by connecting with local host families through Trips for Troops.
Layton Mayor Joy Petro established T4T as a fun, stress-free way to unite Airmen with members of the local community in an effort to break the monotony of living unaccompanied in the dorms.
“We want you to join us on some fun adventures outside of the base,” Petro said in a Trips for Troops welcome video. “Whatever your likes are, we will connect you with (people) who have the same interests so you can get together as often as you want and go enjoy life.”
The types of activities and adventures depends on the interests of the Airman and the host family that matches.
Through T4T, community families have invited Airmen to join them hiking, skiing, horseback riding and fishing. They’re also attended professional sporting events, concerts, plays and simply been invited over for a home-cooked meal.
Airman 1st Class Dennis Spain with the 75th Operational Medical Readiness Squadron and T4T vice chair said the target Airman is a dorm resident, living away from home, but the perfect host family comes in a variety of sizes.
“A tradition family is awesome, but the mom-dad situation doesn’t always exist,” Spain said. “We just want to connect Airmen with community families sharing similar interests.”
The time commitment for the Airman or the host is completely up to them. Some connections get together weekly, others choose quarterly and many opt for somewhere in between.
The important factor is communication between the host family and Airman to see what works best.
Matching people with similar interests has worked well, but if a connection doesn’t happen, T4T will find a new match that benefits the Airman and the family.
Spain said he’s excited for the successes he’s seen while working T4T because matching Airmen with community families with similar interests benefits everyone.
“I cannot think of a better way for host families to show patriotism and military support,” Spain said. “These newly enlisted Airmen come from all over the United States and have different experiences and backgrounds. Airmen have a lot to share with the community about themselves and the Air Force. Plus, there is so much going on and a variety of things to do and see in Utah for the Airman to experience with a community family.”
Airmen and host family candidates can get involved with Trips for Troops by completing an interest survey and application at https://tripsfortroops.org.