NEWS | Feb. 10, 2020

Chaplains, Religious Affairs Specialists Get Strength to Build Bonds at Training Event

By Cpl. Moon, Ji-hwan

CAMP HUMPHREYS, South Korea -- The Eighth Army Chaplain Directorate conducted a "Strong Bonds Local Curriculum Certification Course" Feb. 4-7 at Camp Humphreys, South Korea.

The main purpose of the training session was to equip Eighth Army's various Unit Ministry Teams and individual chaplains with the skill to care for Eighth Army Soldiers and families more effectively at Strong Bonds or command-sponsored events.

Strong Bonds is a unit-based, chaplain-led program, which assists commanders in building individual resiliency by strengthening the Army Family. The core mission of the Strong Bonds program is to increase individual Soldier and family member readiness through relationship education and skills training, according to the Army.

The topics covered during the session included families and couples communication and how they can deal with daily life challenges and conflicts that can arise during life in Korea.

"Happier marriages and relationships lead to happier Soldiers, and happier Soldiers are more focused and prepared for the work that needs to be done," said Chaplain (Capt.) Alex Ishchuk, 501st Military Intelligence Brigade, who was a facilitator for the week-long training session.

"We are very happy and excited to be able to provide this curriculum and training to our families here," Ishchuk continued. "We are also looking at partnering with the USO next month to facilitate this training in the Daegu area."

Eighth Army has one of the largest collection of chaplains and religious affairs specialists in the entire Army, according to the directorate. They are available to Soldiers and family members. Anyone who needs to speak with one needs to simply talk to their chain of command.