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Old 03-11-2011, 09:48 AM   #1
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state national guard?

I live in VA and i'm getting to a point where i'd like to contribute back to my community. I've been toying w/ the idea of the national guard (air or army) but i have questions. I'd like to be part of a group that supports the country in times of need, such as natural disasters etc.

however, i do have selfish requirements. I can't be deployed to another country. work and family obligations (in the form of little ones and a wife ) won't allow it. also, getting some kind of compensation would be nice but not required. either in the form of pay or benefits.

as far as the national guard goes, are there levels to enlistment? like, can i opt for just supporting the continental US? does the 1 weekend a month, 2 weeks a year thing still stand or does it require more time during non-emergencies?

In my research i discovered a Virginia defense force which is a subsidiary to the va national guard. this could be an option but it appears as though their primary function is to support the national guard.

any thoughts/comments/experiences? thanks!

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Old 03-11-2011, 09:54 AM   #2
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I'm talking out of my rear end here as in no back up info/references, just my understanding:

With the national guard you will have to go through basic training... ~6-8 weeks???
You will probably get deployed, they are usually the ones we send over seas.

A friend of mine was in the national guard and he took a tour of duty in kuwait I believe.

IMO if you want to give back to the community join the Volunteer Fire Department, or if your town has a Volunteer Ambulance Service. I've been toying with this idea myself.

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Old 03-11-2011, 11:46 AM   #3
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IF you join the National Guard or US Army Reserves you will do 9 weeks basic training then your Advanced Individual Training (where you learn your job) that could take as little as 8 week to over a year depending on your job. It is likely but not definate that you would get deployed at sometime but they are looking to change the time between deployments to 5 years. Some people never deploy, just depends on the type of unit and their mission. Army Reserves do not respond to state emergencies but the Guard does. Here in SC we have teams set up for floods, tornados and hurricanes but can support any disaster need. A lot of states have a state melitia that is voluntary and not a paid position. In the event of an emergency where the national guard troops are not available the governor can activate them. In SC it is the South Carolina State Guard. They do not go overseas and you get a $3000.00 tax credit on your income taxes if an active member. If you don't want to go anywhere then you need to do as suggested, go to the volunteer fire department or your state guard if they have one. I love our Army and happily deploy wherever I'm told and it has had no ill effect on my family. It's tough but worthwhile to me. Good luck with whatever you choose.
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Old 03-11-2011, 11:53 AM   #4
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Good point... I forgot there is a tax credit in my state if you are an active Volunteer Fire Fighter
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Old 03-15-2011, 11:41 AM   #5
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The National Guard can definitely be a great way to give back to the community and experience some fun adventures. I actually do some work with them and they just released EPIC which creates a personalized video of the type of experiences you might have if you happen to join. It's definitely worth checking out if you're curious about the different routes your National Guard experience could take.
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Old 03-15-2011, 06:19 PM   #6
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My dad has been in the air national guard here in martinsburg wv for 20 some years and has seen many deployments. the guard and reserves arent just weekend warriors like some believe it is. when you go to basic you are in there with active duty army or air depending on what you join. the guard and reserves are just another part of the army and air. and right now there is almost as much if not more guard and reserve units from both branches in iraq as active duty. but the guard and reserves isnt a bad way to go since when you enlist you enlist at the base of your choosing and that is where you are stationed after basic and tech school. and who knows it might even turn into a full time thing there for ya

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