Deployments/TDYs for Married Members or Single Parents

Download a copy of the Personal and Family Readiness Checklist for married service members.


If your family will relocate during your deployment, ensure that you look into what TRICARE coverage is available in the location that they are going to. Additionally, they can seek services at most active duty military base, as well as guard bases. You can utilize this Local Community Resource Finder for a list of services available from guard bases depending on your family’s location.

Below are details about the following Readiness Programs available to you and your family.

Emergency Communication Services
Give Parents a Break
Car Care Because We Care
Deployed/Remote Family Events
Key Spouse Program


Emergency Communication Services

The American Red Cross provides Emergency Communication Services for military members and their families to keep personnel in touch with their families following the death or serious illness of a family member or other important events, such as the birth of a child. This is often the fastest method to inform the deployed/TDY service member and the information or verification in a message also assists the service member’s commanding officer with making a decision regarding emergency leave.

To find out how to contact the American Red Cross to utilize the Emergency Communication Services or other services they provide, click here.

Give Parents a Break Program. The “Give Parents a Break” program is designed to provide eligible parents with free child care one Saturday a month at the Ellsworth Child Development Center (CDC) and Youth Center. Children must be between 6 weeks – 12 years of age. “Give Parents a Break” is normally scheduled for the fourth Saturday of each month. This program is a collaborative effort between the Air Force Aid Society and the Ellsworth Child Development Center. Please stop by the Airman & Family Readiness Center with a copy of the sponsor’s TDY/Remote PCS orders to obtain a certificate. Certificates can also be obtained from a Chaplain or First Sergeant. Click here for more information.

Car Care Because We Care.

You can get a free oil/filter change, lubrication, and vehicle safety check on your primary vehicle at the Ellsworth AFB Auto Skills Center, courtesy of the Air Force Aid Society. Service is limited to once per deployment/TDY and twice per calendar year if your spouse is assigned to a remote tour. To obtain a voucher from the Airman & Family Readiness Center, simply bring in a copy of the sponsor’s TDY/Remote PCS orders. Once you receive your voucher, you can arrange your own appointment with the skills center.

Deployed/Remote Family Events. The Airman & Family Readiness Center has FREE monthly activities for family members of deployed/remote military members. Fun filled events are planned for different locations throughout the area to help break up the time while your service member is away. Please give us a call at (605) 385-4663 to find out what is going on this month.

Key Spouse Program.

Key Spouses serve as a communication and support link between the unit and its families. They understand the difficulties and rewards of military life. They know about community resources and can help you get answers to your questions. Contact your first sergeant or squadron orderly to learn who your unit key spouse is and how they provide information and support to family members. For more information, visit our Keyspouse web site.