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Strong Bonds Program

Soldier holding a child

If most couples say they are happy, why does one out of every two couples end up divorced?

The Indiana Army National Guard Strong Bonds program is one of the top programs in the state offered to current members of the Army National Guard. Since 2012, over 4,500 Service Members and over 1,300 family members have taken part in events held around the state of Indiana.

The Strong Bonds program offers events for any Soldier; married, engaged, dating, or single. You will find training events relaxed and fun, engaging and discussion based. We have events to strengthen relationships, strengthen families, and build resilience for individuals or families.

Strong Bonds events a FREE to attend, with the only cost being getting to the event location. With events being held around the state, there is sure to be one in your area of the state that you can take part in.


Being a part of the reserves and military has its unique struggles that friends and family do not always fully understand. Training a weekend each month, extended training periods to attend, schools to go to, requirements to meet, and possible deployment.

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 life skills training.

Strong Bonds events are half day, full day, and weekend events offered primarily at an “off site” location in order to maximize the training effect. The event or “get away” provides a fun, safe, and secure environment in which to address the impact of military life. Our single soldiers. Couples and families can expect amazing opportunities though the military but also can expect to endure challenges that their civilian counterparts, friends and families don’t always understand.

Soldiers, their spouses and their families endure long separations, frequent relocations, and the stress of deployment and this can subject then to extreme hardship. That’s why we developed the Strong Bonds program. No matter what your Family dynamic, Strong Bonds is for you. Events are being offered for Married Couples, Families and Singles.

Strong Bonds is the Army’s program designed to assist commanders in building, strengthening, preserving and restoring Army Families and Single Soldiers. Strong Bonds has four (4) program components: Single Soldiers, Married Couples, Families and Phases of Deployment.

The different curriculums that are taught at events, help teach individuals skills that are useful in the military as well as in their personal lives; communication skills, conflict resolution, resiliency, teamwork, relationship skills, are just a few of the subjects that are taught.

Highlights of the program events:

  1. Free lodging for weekend events
  2. Optional childcare, with a certified childcare agency
  3. Up to 4 meals paid for
  4. Take home materials
  5. Meeting other military individuals and families
  6. Event locations throughout the state of Indiana

Program Eligibility

Title 10, Chapter 88, Section 1789 and paragraph 16-6e AR 165-1 (Annex F) states the authority for participation in chaplain led events.

  1. Active Duty Soldiers, Reserve Component (ARNG and USAR) Soldiers in an active status, and their immediate family members are eligible to participate in Strong Bonds training events.

Immediate family members mean:

  1. The member’s spouse
  2. Any child of the member as described in 10 USC 1072, subparagraph (2)(D) and subparagraph (6).

    No authority exists for DA civilians to participate in the Strong Bonds Program.

    Strong Bonds is an Army program authorized and funded to provide support to Soldiers and their Families; Attendance at Strong Bonds events is restricted to Soldiers and Army Families.

Event Structures

  1. Alpha – 4 hour events These events are primarily geared for the single soldier and couples where we focus on a specific theme and end with a great meal. We like to choose venues where you can continue to enjoy a night out either with friends or as a date with your spouse. The focus is empowering the individual soldier to feel ready to meet the challenges of balancing the stresses of the military life and finding and building healthy relationships that can last a life time. For our couples the half day picks one segment of our weekend training and focuses on that. It allows the couple to work on a specific area of any relationship to help strengthen it and to endure the many challenges of the military life.
  2. Bravo – 8 hour events Single soldiers, Couples and Families will find training opportunities with these events. These events allow our Military soldiers and their families time to learn together and bring home ideas that they can incorporate into their daily lives to enrich and strengthen them as individuals and as a family unit. Locations are great to promote couple and family fun time during and after the event.
  3. Charlie – 12 hour events Couples and Families are the focus of these events and provide training to strengthen their relationships, inspire hope and rekindle marriages. Whether you are celebration 1 year of marriage or 20, these trainings have something for you. Located at retreat centers and hotels in areas that have fun events and activities to do in the evening and allow you quality time with your spouse and family.

Single Soldiers, Married Couples, Families and Phases of Deployment.

  1. Strong Bonds for Singles. With 3 different curriculums, we offer events that focus on resilience and becoming a more effective leader, to healthy relationships and seeing how others can shape our lives.
  2. Strong Bonds for Married Couples. We have 6 different materials to help couples strengthens the marital bond, giving couples the tools and information they need for better communication and relationship building.
  3. Strong Bonds – Families. Teaches effective communication and listening skills to parents and children; builds parental skills to help care for and manage children. Note. Children are active participants for all Strong Bonds – Families Retreats.
  4. Strong Bonds for Families. Using 2 curriculums, our facilitators help teach effective communication and listening skills to parents and children; builds parental skills to help care for and manage children. Note. Children are active participants for all Strong Bonds Families Retreats.
  5. Strong Bonds –Families of Deployed.Provides the tools to enable Families to not just survive, but thrive in the midst of their Soldier’s deployment. Note. Children are active participants for all Strong Bonds – Families of Deployed Training events.
  6. Strong Bonds – Pre-Deployment. Module(s) identifying unique challenges single Soldiers, married couples, and Army Families will face and planning how they will manage their relationships through the stress of pre-deployment.
  7. Strong-Bonds – Reintegration. Provides tools to assist Soldiers and their Families with issues pertaining to the transition from the battlefield to the home front, as Family members adjust to disrupted routines and challenges of reconnection.

Strong Bonds Action Officer: phone: 317-247-3300 ext. 87669 Email: inarngstrongbonds@gmail.com

Strong Bonds Website

To find information about current and past events, join our Facebook page: INARNG Strong Bonds program

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