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548th ISRG creates support initiative for Airmen by Airmen

Sustained Performance Enhancement and Resiliency (SPEaR) initiative

Sustained Performance Enhancement and Resiliency (SPEaR) initiative

BEALE AIR FORCE BASE, California -- The 548th Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance Group at Beale Air Force Base, California, collaborated with the 9th Medical Group and other supporting agencies to develop the Sustained Performance Enhancement and Resiliency (SPEaR) initiative, which assists ISR Airmen in maintaining an optimal level of performance.

"It's a joint initiative between the 548th ISRG and supporting agencies to create a more population-centric human performance optimization initiative tailored toward the needs of ISR Airmen," said Maj. Travis Lunasco, 548th ISRG operational psychologist.

The primary goals of SPEaR are to create a culture of Total Force Fitness and Human Performance Optimization, foster empowerment toward self-care, examine organizational policies and processes, and equip front-line supervisors with ways to engage Airmen.

"We began with just an idea of this initiative. We learned about the ISR Airmen, the unique set of skills they have, the demand in their enterprise, as well as some of their vulnerabilities," Lunasco said. "What we've done is create a model that is very unique because it identifies and builds on pre-existing strengths and reduces vulnerabilities exclusive to the ISR community here on Beale."

SPEaR is a community initiative in which the Airmen assigned to the 548th ISRG advocate for their own health and performance. It is a constantly evolving movement that allows them to take care of their own. Many of the services in design or being offered are; personal finances, performance optics, mental tactics, performance nutrition, functional fitness, social networking, medical, and mentoring. These services are designed, coordinated and implemented by 548th ISRG Airmen.

"It's not necessarily always a medical or health-related situation for Airmen," said Col. Jody Ocker, 9th MDG commander.  "It could be another aspect in their life, whether it's something at home or outside of work, that can hinder their performance."

SPEaR is a full spectrum initiative, meaning it requires leadership and mission operators to examine the architectural framework of the institution as a whole for opportunities to implement skill sets directly into the existing infrastructure. The changes or modifications of the existing infrastructure can help ensure daily practices and mission requirements are met by providing Airmen with resources that can assist them at work or in their personal life.

"The really unique thing about this is the ISR community is letting us know what they need," Ocker said. "The community can verify a problem or request assistance to better an aspect of what their mission requires. As the medical side, I will look over my staff and see if we could help meet that need, assess it or provide consultation."

Lunasco added that this initiative at the 548th ISRG could be replicated for all Airmen. Every Airman, such as security forces, maintainers, and civil engineers, have their own unique challenges, and finding ways to help support them is a start to a more resilient Air Force, he said.

"This is about being proactive, inoculating Airmen and giving them skill sets or tools to help them operate optimally versus waiting until their health or performance degrades," Lunasco said.