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CG SUPRT Program Video

Reviewed Dec 18, 2014


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My name is Maura Dollymore; I am the Director of Health, Safety, and Work-Life for the United States Coast Guard. I have a great kind of passion and both emotion and certain amount of definite real life experience with elder care. I have just gone through, in the last three years-and it's really still ongoing, because my mother, thank God, is alive and well-a lot of personal situations. And that's what happens to all of us when generations get to that age. My name is Gleyce Sciullo and I am a Health Services Technician in the Coast Guard. My husband and I are both enlisted and it's tough. We're on opposite ends of the spectrum. I work in the health services field and he's a Boatswains Mate, just recently promoted to Warrant. My husband actually is on temporary assignment more often than I am. He travels a lot with his job. It's very difficult with two small children. I'm Tim Merrell, Health Promotion Program Manager for the Coast Guard. I was in the Coast Guard for twenty-six years. I was a Medic; I was an Independent Duty Corpsman. I know how rough it is out there for the active duty member and for their family member. Leaving their spouse and their kids and coming back and kind of readjusting to that whole situation. My name is Captain Erica Schwartz and I'm the preventive medicine physician for the Coast Guard and I work in operational medicine medical readiness. My management style is absolutely atypical because I tend to be a hands-off manager. I don't like being a micromanager. I like letting my staff do what they're there to do. I'm Ashley Barber, I intern here and I have two other jobs and I go to school so time management and juggling and finding time to sleep and do all my work and all that kind of stuff is very hard. My name is Ms. Shay Tull-Cook and I go by Shay, I'm a Family Support Specialist for Coast Guard Headquarters, Office of Work-Life. I do a range of things, I manage five different programs, but one of the major programs is the Personal Financial Management Program. Usually what I've seen out in the field is budgeting issues, credit card misuse, just overall irresponsibility, traveling, and their spouses losing their jobs, so that impinges on their budget from the loads and amount of debt that increases over their term. We-I say "we" because my husband was also military-have the same problems and situations and issues that civilians have. It's both emotionally and personally exhausting, the grief and the coping that you have to go through, and a heck of a lot of practical things that have to get done to either continue to support your elder at home or figure out the very complicated kind of scary system of assisted living and nursing homes, and maybe eventually hospice. Knowing that I was able to manage myself and my time and my work schedule perfectly fine, and then you throw family into the mix and you throw dynamics into the mix, it becomes extremely challenging. And I know from personal experience. That's why I was hesitant of reaching out. Some service members are coming and saying that their security clearance are about to be revoked because they never checked their credit report, and their debt is building up and they're having all kinds of liens and other things that affect your credit report. And it also affects their mission readiness. In a lot of our situations when we're out at sea, safety is a priority and attention to detail is a priority. If you're doing Boat Ops and you're more focused on finances or the health of your child or what's going on with your wife, they're not going to be concentrating on what they need to do at the time, and that could cause life or limb. The risks are too high to have distractions like that and not talk to somebody about it. You know, it is very difficult to deal with employees when you're talking about work life, especially from a civilian perspective because you don't know, honestly, what's going on in their lives, and as a manager, you're focused on getting the mission done. When I first hired Ashley, she was a fantastic employee, after about three months, she started to have some problems and some issues. I had a loss in the family that made it emotionally difficult to separate things so there was a lot going on with siblings. I was caught up, I think, with that. We do have a wonderful program in CG SUPRT that can help folks in personal support, grief support, coping support, financial stuff, which I can't emphasize enough. My siblings, we've kind of over the last two years, gotten into a better rhythm with ourselves and our mom, to kind of manage the ups and downs of things happening, the point of this is that it's a marathon, not a sprint. And so making sure that you plug in the support early and often in all the different ways that you can, because that stress, that anxiety, that depression, any of us would face in situations in our life, certainly distracts us from being on target when we're out doing our mission. Services through CG SUPRT include a 90-day money coaching, which is unlimited services up to 90 days, then we have the onsite classes-13 classes each year-and then we also have webinars, which are great. Right now we have "What Money Coaching Can Do for You" webinar, and "Credit Card Use" webinar; several different webinars that we're going to have. So those four services are the main and of course we have the tools and research items on the website: CGSUPRT.COM She came to me and she did talk about the projects that I hadn't turned in and was asking what was going on. I actually reached out to CG SUPRT and the Health Coaching to help me manage my time and manage my emotions with everything going on, and actually helped us communicate with each other better. She said she didn't know what was going on and I didn't know how to tell her, learning about the CG SUPRT program and taking that first step was the biggest move. I am extremely glad and grateful that we do have those services. And we do have those programs in place, because they have helped me tremendously. If I had anything to say to someone who was looking for support is, "just to do it." There's no consequence to it, except that it makes you a better person; it makes you understand who you are and it gives you a pathway to getting there. Because a lot of times you just can't do it by yourself. I use the example of Tiger Woods. He's arguably the best golfer in the world, yet he has a coach to help him with his swing. Everybody needs help now and then, and people shouldn't be ashamed of it. Why reinvent the wheel when somebody has already lived those experiences and can help. And CG SUPRT is a great resource for that. In the military world there definitely is this sense of "I'm strong" "I don't need help" when in actual fact, people that take the time to get help are often stronger and able to take more blows in the future than folks that deny it. Because we all face stress over time and over life, and nobody is that strong. A colleague of mine just shared a quote from Secretary of Defense Leon Pannetta, who has been very active and vocal in this area of stigma, and I just love his sentence. He said, "It needs to be okay to not be okay."




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