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Unite program makes smiles and cohesion happen

Airmen from the 49th Aerospace Medicine Squadron decorate cupcakes during a Unite program on Holloman Air Force Base, N.M. The program provides funds for 36 squadrons across the 49th Wing, to plan cohesion events. Each Airman is allotted $5 for food and beverage and $17.50 for programs and activities. (Courtesy Photo)

Airmen from the 49th Aerospace Medicine Squadron decorate cupcakes during a Unite program on Holloman Air Force Base, N.M. The program provides funds for 36 squadrons across the 49th Wing, to plan cohesion events. Each Airman is allotted $5 for food and beverage and $17.50 for programs and activities. (Courtesy Photo)

Airmen from the 49th Wing Staff Agencies work together in an exercise during a Unite program Sept. 13, 2019, on Holloman Air Force Base, N.M. The Air Force Services Center started the Unite program, August 2018, as part of Air Force Chief of Staff General David Goldfein’s initiative of revitalizing squadrons. (Courtesy Photo)

Airmen from the 49th Wing Staff Agencies work together in an exercise during a Unite program Sept. 13, 2019, on Holloman Air Force Base, N.M. The Air Force Services Center started the Unite program, August 2018, as part of Air Force Chief of Staff General David Goldfein’s initiative of revitalizing squadrons. (Courtesy Photo)

HOLLOMAN AIR FORCE BASE, N.M. --

Squadron revitalization, has become one of the top priorities across the Air Force. Many changes have been made to increase camaraderie among units–the Unite Program is one of those changes.

In August 2016, Air Force Chief of Staff General David Goldfein, released a letter to Airmen across the force with his first priority being revitalization within squadrons. The Air Force Services Center brought the Unite program into existence August 2018.

The Unite initiative provides unit commanders the funding and freedom to initiate programs that benefit their unit.  Each member, military and civilian, is annually allotted $5 for food and beverage and $17.50 for programs and activities.

“With this funding, there are endless opportunities for commanders to build cohesion and strengthen their squadrons,” said Yolanda Hingel, 49th Force Support Squadron community cohesion coordinator. “Normally they go to the commissary, where they can find food for a burger burn or an ice cream social, but the event has to also have a cohesive exercise attached to it. [The cohesion] can be tug-of-war, a trivia game, or it can be a dance off. Anything that brings everyone in the squadron together for fun and relaxation”

Hingel explained how honored she is to be in a position that helps units come together.

“It’s about revitalizing the morale and people getting the opportunity to connect with one another,” Hingel exclaimed. “And the unite point of contacts that I work with are amazing! You always have those folks who are planners or great with getting their squadrons together, so now that person gets to put it on paper. This is a great position for them.”

Hingel mentioned that if Unite POCs need assistance with cohesive event ideas, their first choice should be activities provided on base, such as the bowling center, outdoor recreation and of course their food options.

“Planning and coordinating these events are really fun,” said Airman 1st Class Autumn Vogt, 49th Wing Staff Agencies Unite program coordinator. “Being able to provide your colleagues an opportunity to learn more about each other and relax for a bit is great, but knowing you put it together for them makes you feel even better.”

For more information on the Unite program, contact Yolanda Hingel at 575-572-1719.