his month, we complete our comprehensive review of the 12 pillars of the Army’s Ready, Resilient and Army Strong campaign. We’ve highlighted each pillar of the campaign in detail, sharing the resources available to help improve and sustain our readiness – ensuring leaders, Soldiers, Families and civilians know where to turn for expertise and support. Knowledge is vital to success in any organization, as it empowers us as teammates to help ourselves and each other while making Team Bragg more ready and resilient in the process.

During the month of April, we provided information and resources on Suicide Prevention, the Army Substance Abuse Program and Transition: Soldiers for Life. As in previous months, I will recap these final pillars of our Ready, Resilient, and Army Strong campaign.

Suicide Prevention

Suicide prevention is the single most important pillar of the Ready, Resilient and Army Strong campaign. Each and every servicemember, civilian and Family member is vital to the strength of our Army. Suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem. When we face the inevitable life challenges, reach out to teammates for perspective, support, and reassurance. In isolation, problems intensify, and can seem to overwhelm us as individuals. Life, and particularly Army life is a team effort. Talk with a loved one or friend; approach your chain of command; get in touch with a chaplain; seek out a behavioral health professional; or go to the Emergency Room to see a health care provider. As an Army Family, we care about you and want to help. As you encounter others facing difficulties or who are in need of counsel, be there for them and escort them to a professional. Help one another get the help that’s available and needed. As someone around you exhibits the signs of stress, depression or crisis, react with lightning speed, extreme care and compassion. Get engaged to make a difference. A few weeks ago, a Paraglide article highlighted a local woman who saved someone who was contemplating suicide. She saw warning signs that indicated something just wasn’t right and she got involved immediately. Her actions made a difference between life and death. Let’s all commit to a decisive difference to help a struggling teammate.

Army Substance Abuse Program

Substance abuse erodes our capacity to achieve our full potential as Soldiers and citizens. It violates our Army values and degrades our standards of readiness, performance and discipline, and places at risk our ability to accomplish our missions. If you struggle with an alcohol addiction, use illegal drugs or misuse prescription medication, you must address the problem head-on. If you know someone who struggles with substance abuse, help them to the assistance that they need. It takes a team and Army Family to inspire those gripped by addiction to face and overcome the ill-effects of substance abuse. The Army Substance Abuse Program provides our leaders and Soldiers with effective prevention programs and educational services to help eliminate substance abuse within our ranks. Success in this endeavor will strengthen our effectiveness and combat readiness.

Transition: Soldiers for Life

Once a Soldier – Always a Soldier … The Soldier for Life program is a Chief of Staff of the Army initiative that takes a holistic approach to the military life cycle of our Soldiers. This effort, in concert with government and community programs, supports the successful transition of our Soldiers and their Families from our ranks to effectively re-integrate into civilian life. As leaders, we will provide active support to ensure our Soldiers and their Families successfully transition. Educating our Soldiers on the education and healthcare benefits they’ve earned, and how to fully leverage available programs is absolutely essential. We will provide Soldiers and their Families the tools they need to thrive in today’s society to remain strong advocates of the U.S. Army, and to continue their service to the nation in a new capacity.

In the coming months, we will provide in-depth stories of individuals who successfully employ available programs to strengthen their readiness and resilience. Success breeds success, so I encourage you to share your victory stories. Share your experiences of obtaining help and support as well as the opportunities you’ve experienced for helping others in need. By educating each other, especially through personal experiences, we provide that vital link that can positively impact and strengthen our teammates.

I am extremely proud of our Fort Bragg servicemembers, civilians and Families for all you do each and every day. Thank for you for your continued commitment to strengthening our readiness and resiliency and for your committed service to our nation.