Newcomer Needs Assessment Checklist I Jan 2009 update This outline is designed to assist you with your duties as a sponsor. You will need to assist the newcomer in many ways before they arrive to the 501st family. Most issues will need to be taken care of ahead of time to make in-processing fast and smooth. The needs of each newcomer and family will be different, so you want to find out what those needs are and then respond to them. It's not good enough to just say, "Let me know what you need"...good sponsorship is proactive! Contact the newcomer within two working days of your appointment as sponsor. You can use a personal call, fax, or e-mail. When you contact the newcomer, determine their needs by utilizing the checklist below. Questions are not only provided but the basic answer to assist you in meeting the needs of your newcomer. Refer your newcomer to the http://www.501csw.usafe.af.mil/ for information about RAF Alconbury and RAF Molesworth
Rank/Name: _____________________________________________________ Duty/Home/Orderly Room/Leave Phone#: _____________
E-mail Work___________________________________________________________ Home__________________________________________________________ Are you married? Yes or No Passports and visas are needed prior to arrival in the UK. MPF/Personnel Support Detachments should handle all paperwork concerning passports and visas. http://www.ukvisas.gov.uk https://www.fcg.pentagon.mil
Will family members arrive at the same time as you?
Yes or No
If no, when will they arrive__________________________________________ Names: _________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________ Ages/Sex: _______________________________________________________
Are you shipping a car? Yes or No
Are you doing one or two House Hold Goods shipments?
Do you have a current state-side driver’s license? Yes or No If yes, do you need to renew before you leave? If no, you will need to obtain one before you PCS. In the UK, the minimum age at which a provisional license (learner's permit) is valid is 17. When driving under a provisional license, the learner must be accompanied by a driver holding a full driving license that is either over the age of 21 and has held a full driver's license for a minimum of 3 years. The vehicle being driven by the learner must also be fitted with L-plates on both the back and front of the vehicle. This tells other road users that the vehicle is being operated by a driver without their full license and that they may make mistakes easily and that the driver may not be fully competent yet. The L-plate consists of a white square plate (often tied to the vehicle or attached by magnets) with a large red L in the middle. The cost of obtaining a driver’s license in the UK varies. This website can help you determine what needs to be accomplished in order to obtain a UK driver’s license http://www.dvla.gov.uk/ All personnel permanently assigned or TDY to the Tri-Base community must complete the 3rd AF Drivers Licensing Course within 30 days of arrival. Additionally, once you arrive, you can study and take practice drivers tests at the Starbucks, Library and the Education Center. IMPORTANT: Call the Airman and Family Readiness Center at DSN 268-3557 to sign your newcomer up for the next Newcomers Orientation (normally held twice monthly). The local Driving Condition Brief is provided at the orientation and this and is a prerequisite for securing your license. To assist your newcomer prepare for this test, refer them the Highway Code Website. There will be locations across the base where you will be able to use computers to study and practice taking the drivers examination. http://www.direct.gov.uk/en/TravelAndTransport/Highwaycode/DG_070202 (The local process for driver’s training/testing is continuing to change, please confirm the process once your newcomer is scheduled to arrive) What type of housing will you be seeking and how many bedrooms? _____ Base Housing: ____ Purchasing a Home: ____ Rental Property: _______
IMPORTANT: The newcomer must in-process through the housing office immediately upon arrival. This is very important as there are special laws, customs and agreements in the UK that could impact your housing contracts. Housing Office Location Bldg 572/RAF Alconbury Telephone Commercial 01480-82-3518/3519
Hours of Operation Monday - Thursday 0830-1600 Friday 0830-1400 (Closed Friday afternoon for training) Base Housing The waiting list for government controlled housing varies from 3-12 months or more. This waiting period is dependent upon several factors i.e., number of dependents and rank, There are 237 government controlled quarters. This limited number of existing quarters makes it impossible to house all military families on base. Government housing has both 240 and 110 outlets for your convenience. Housing is located in two geographically separated areas. The off-base housing briefing is given twice a week on Mondays and Thursdays at 1030. 209 units are located on Alconbury 28 at Brampton (about 5 miles from Alconbury and 10 miles from Molesworth officers only) Buying a Home Home buying is possible but the process is different in England. Finding a home could take a few days to many months. For sale homes are advertised through estate agents, similar to real estate agents in the states. After selecting a home and having your offer accepted, you will need to secure a solicitor, a mortgage lender, and a land surveyor. The solicitor will complete all the necessary paperwork for the purchase of the home. This process can take up to 12 weeks. This is twice as long as in many other countries. Securing a mortgage may be a bit more difficult. There are only a handful of banks in the UK who will lend to Americans due to various reasons, lack of UK credit history, time in England, income, and so forth. Some banks may require a down payment anywhere from 3% to 10% of the purchase price. And don’t forget the cost of the solicitor fees and Stamp duty tax (up to 3% of purchase price for Stamp duty tax). Earnest money is not a normal practice and until contracts have been exchanged and signed, either party can pull out at anytime. Website: www.rightmove.co.uk Rental Property The housing office displays listings of available off-base housing. Each listing is inspected to ensure it is suitable. Off-base housing in the Tri-base community area is always in short supply and the demand for it remains high, especially for
that rare large size unit. It is a fact of life that the majority of available rentals are smaller than most houses in the states and most do not have closets. Housing office can also assist with tenancy agreements for storage areas and arbitrate disputes between members and landlords. If your newcomer is looking at renting a house remind they will possibly need first and last months rent and a security deposit upfront. A safe amount to have available would be around $3K. An advance for one month’s rent can be given and this is paid back in 12 installments. An advance can also be given for deposits for houses rented through local letting agents and this advance is payable in full upon leaving the Tri-base area Utilities Off-Base You will be billed quarterly for most utilities or you may choose to have a standing order at your banking facility that pays a monthly estimate. The cost of utilities varies greatly depending on size of home, method of heating and usage.
Appliances All government-controlled quarters are furnished with an American-type refrigerator, range, washer, dryer and dishwasher. American or British appliances (washers, dryers and refrigerators) are available from the Furnishing Management Office (FMO) on a permanent loan basis for economy quarters. FMO is located in the Housing Office. Aside from the voltage differences, most British homes are not built to house large American appliances and probably best left in storage in the states. Dormitories Dormitory accommodation is situated on RAF Alconbury. E-4 and above with 3 years or more time in service will be residing off base. There is one permanent party dormitories, the one for single/unaccompanied members is single occupancy and are room-bath-room configuration. Each room is 180 square feet and is fully furnished with a range of fitted furniture providing: computer unit, writing desk, entertainment unit, full size bed, coffee table, recliner chair, full size refrigerator and microwave. Each building has a well-equipped kitchen and laundry room. All rooms have dual voltage outlets, ceiling fans, and window screens. Individual exterior doors have an electronic locking system. For inquiries concerning the dormitory program, please contact the Dorm Manager at DSN 314-268-3115 or the unaccompanied Housing Manager at DSN 268-3506. Schools (Pre-school, elementary, high school, private) Yes or No Alconbury Elementary Schools http://www.alco-es.eu.dodea.edu Location Building 682, 684, 694, 677, 693/RAF Alconbury Telephone Commercial 01480-82-3620 DSN 268-3620 Mailing Address (APO) Alconbury Elementary School Unit 5570 Box 50
APO AE 09470 School Hours: 0825-1500 Alconbury Middle/High School http://www.alco-hs.eu.dodea.edu Location Building 691/RAF Alconbury Telephone Commercial 01480-82-3769 DSN 268-3769 Fax 268-3183 Mailing Address (APO) Alconbury High School Unit 5570 Box 60 APO AE 09470 School Hours: 08:25-15:00 Summer Office Hours: 08:30-11:30 13:00-15:00
School Liaison Officer (SLO) Location Building 671/RAF Alconbury Telephone Commercial 01480-82-3232 DSN 268-3232 Hours of Operation M-F 0800-1700 The School Liaison Officer improves transitional support for school children of 501 CSW personnel by establishing partnerships between other military installations in the United Kingdom area and local schools, advocating for military children, increasing awareness of the unique needs of military children, and providing a process to address and resolve military-specific education issues. Children can be registered before a house is found. Childcare (on-base, off-base, home care providers) Yes or No Children can be registered ahead of time for childcare. This is done using DD form 2606 Request for Childcare and a copy of orders. Location Building 700 /RAF Alconbury Telephone Commercial 01480-82-3527/3675 DSN 268-3527 Hours of Operation M-F 0630-1730 Federal Holidays Closed Family Daycare Program-Currently there are no family daycare providers. Please check with the Child Development Center. For a listing of off base UK child care providers, stop by the CDC for the most current information.
Eligible for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) WIC Location Building 671/RAF Alconbury Telephone Commercial 01480-82-3158 Hours of Operation Tuesday 0800-1200 Wednesday 1200-1700 Thursday 1200-1700
Yes or No
Will your spouse be seeking employment? Yes or No Career Focus/Spouse Employment Location Building 671/RAF Alconbury Telephone Commercial 01480-82-3557 DSN 268-3557 Hours of Operation M-F 0800-1700 Please refer to http://www.501csw.usafe.af.mil/ and http://www.militaryhomefront.dod.mil for more details regarding on and off base employment. Off Base Employment – Alconbury Tri-Base Community Searching for a job in an overseas assignment is different from a job search in the US. Since the bases tend to be situated in more rural settings, there is not as much industry as you may find in more populated areas. Work Permit - None required as long as spouse has UK visa (the stamp located in passport) and this visa should be obtained prior to entry into the UK. You will need a National Insurance Number. You apply for a National Insurance Number through the Cambridge Job Centre Plus, and you need to have an appointment scheduled. Cambridge Job Centre Plus can be contacted by commercial phone at 011-44-1223 545000 (from US) or 01223-545000 (inside UK). Alternate contact info: Call 0845 60 00643 (inside UK) or visit: http://www.dwp.gov.uk/lifeevent/benefits/ni_number.asp. Where to look for Jobs: Job Centre Plus Most towns have a Job Centre Plus. The Job Centre Plus is similar to the State Employment Agencies in the US. Positions posted are typically entry level, administrative office positions and manual labor. The best way to search jobs is to go to a Job Centre Plus in person. Website: http://www.jobcentreplus.gov.uk Newspapers Several local newspapers have job listings on certain days of the week. Wednesdays: Cambridge Evening News http://www.ourtimecambs.co.uk/ and East Anglia Daily Times www.eadt.co.uk Thursday: Huntingdon Post www.huntspost.co.uk Recruitment Agencies One of the most common ways of locating employment in the UK is through a Recruitment or Employment Agency. These agencies offer free services for job seekers, as they collect their fees from the companies they represent. These offices do placements for both temporary and permanent positions. Contact information for local agencies can be found in the Yellow Pages phone book. Look under "recruitment agencies" or "employment agencies."
UK Taxes For more information, contact the Inland Revenue Service at 0845 302 1453 or http://www.hmrc.gov.uk. Taxes are deducted on a sliding scale from 0% to 40%. This is based on income level, and you are given a personal allowance of just under 5,000 pounds a year (before you must pay taxes). You will initially be given an emergency tax code, which gets the taxes taken out immediately until you have a "tax code" based on your salary. You will have to change your tax code once it is issued, as this will lower your tax bracket.
Curriculum Vitae (CV) When applying for an off-base position you will need a Curriculum Vitae (CV). The CV is basically identical to a resume. To view sample CV's checkout: http://www.monster.co.uk.
When preparing a CV Use A4 paper. This can be purchased at stores such as Tesco or W.H. Smith newsagents in England. Remember to use the appropriate spell-check, BritishEnglish, not American-English. If you are an American citizen, it may be wise to add nationality and include the wording "No work permit required." Websites As in the U.S., many companies and businesses will have job postings on their websites as well as being posted on local recruiters’ websites. It can be useful to start with a web search before arriving in the local area so that you can get a general idea of the job market. Job Search websites: http://jobs.cambridge-news.co.uk http://www.cooperlomaz.co.uk http://www.fish4.co.uk http://www.totaljobs.com/JobSearch/ JobSearch.aspx http://www.uknetguide.co.uk CV (resume) websites: http://www.alec.co.uk/cvtips/ http://www.handsoncv.co.uk/ http://www.instantcv.co.uk
Certificates and Qualifications Like the US, certain jobs may require certificates and qualifications. It is a good idea to find if you require one…or be benefited by one…as early as possible. It is possible to begin to acquire some of these certificates/qualifications via the web before you get here. Do you need me to make Lodging reservations: Yes or No (If yes, get a copy of their orders (orders are not needed to make reservations) to reserve it ASAP and find out what kind of room they need.) Family: ___ Single: ___ Double: ___ Britannia Inn Location Building 639/RAF Alconbury
Telephone Commercial 01480-82-6000 Hours of Operation 24/7
Lodging rooms: Lodging will allow incoming personnel to stay for 30 days but the amount you will be reimbursed will vary depending on each individual situation. Reimbursement for temporary lodging is handled by the housing office on RAF Alconbury. It is most important that on your first day you should go to the Housing office to receive an explanation of the house hunting process. THE KEY IS THAT PERSONNEL MUST ACTIVELY BE SEARCHING FOR HOUSING DURING THEIR STAY IN TEMPORARY HOUSING. Recertification for temporary lodging expenses must be done every 10 days. Bringing Pets: Yes or No RAF Feltwell Veterinary Clinic Location Building 80/RAF Feltwell Telephone Commercial 01638-52-7097 Mail (APO) Mail (British) RAF Feltwell Veterinary Clinic RAF Feltwell Veterinary Clinic Unit 5095 Box 280 Bldg 80 APO AE 09461-5280 RAF Feltwell Thetford, Norfolk IP 26 4HA Hours of Operation M-F 0830-1630 Closed for lunch everyday from 1200-1300 Closed weekends, holidays, and family days Feltwell is the only US military clinic for all of the UK. Monthly satellite clinics are held at RAF Alconbury and RAF Croughton. All pets living with military and civilian members assigned to the Tri-Base (military and civilian) must register with the Feltwell Clinic. Services are only provided for customers that have completed the checklist. You will need: One copy of DD Form 2343 is required per pet. Please include a PSC address, civilian address, and email address if available. Please update your unit/squadron, installation, telephone numbers, and DEROS as soon as this information changes One copy of orders assigning the individual to the UK (front only is fine). One photocopy of your ID card (front only is fine) Please initial both pages and sign the policy letter Medical history only if pet had special requirements. (e.g. Diabetic, hyperthyroid) Registration packets can be hand delivered to the Feltwell Vet Clinic, faxed, emailed, or mailed. Packets sent through the mail should be sent to the following address: RAF Feltwell Veterinary Clinic Unit 5095 Box 280
APO AE 09461-5280 Pet Passports Pet passports are not required to enter the United Kingdom from the United States nor are they required to go back. To enter the United Kingdom from the United States you need to follow the Pet Scheme. For more information about this program, you should go to www.defra.gov.uk. The process for bringing pets into the UK with little or no quarantine can take approximately 7 months. You will need a pet passport if you are planning on traveling off the island of England to Ireland or the mainland. RAF Feltwell Vet Clinic can issue pet passports which can be downloaded at Pet Passport application . Please make sure all necessary documents are turned in at the same time. You can hand deliver it, snail mail or email it. Kennel Information: Yes or No Local Boarding Catteries and Kennels Pets going to catteries and kennels will need the following shots as a minimum requirement: Cats must have been vaccinated against Feline Enteritis, Feline Respiratory Disease and Cat Flu. Dogs must have been vaccinated against Parvovirus, Leptospirosis, Hepatitis B and Hardpad/Distemper Bordatella (kennel cough). This must be supported by the production of a valid certificate before the cat/dog can be admitted. Huntingdon Boarding Kennels and Catteries at Accessplace.com http://www.accessplace.com/kennel-cattery/cambridgeshire/huntingdon.htm
Alconbury Hill Kennels & Cattery High Pines/Alconbury Hill Huntingdon, Alconbury Weston, PE28 4JG 01480-89-0797 Fieldview Kennels & Cattery Fields View/Fenstanton Rd Huntingdon, Hilton, PE28 9JA 01480-83-0215 Topcat Cattery Top Farm Bungalow/Ermine St Huntingdon, Alconbury, PE28 4EW 01480-45-5346
Nobles Farm Cattery Russet Lodge/Noble La Huntingdon, Bluntisham, PE28 3LG 01487-84-1327 Cromwell Farm Warboys Rd Huntingdon, Ramsey, PE26 2NU 01487-71-0181 African Dawns The Old Whistling Pig/Heath Road Huntingdon, Warboys, PE28 2UJ 01487-82-2630 Warlows Meadow Parkhall Rd
Huntingdon, Somersham, PE28 3HQ 01487-84-0102 Plough Farm Puddock Rd Huntingdon, Warboys, PE28 2UB 01354-69-2319 Rockmeadow Needingworth Rd Huntingdon, Bluntisham, PE28 3RJ 01487-84-1572 Rivendell Cattery
2 Thrapston Rd Huntingdon, Catworth, PE28 0PW 01832-71-0163 Warboys Heath Rd Huntingdon, Warboys, PE28 2UJ 01487-82-4450 Greenacres Farm Puddock Rd Huntingdon, Warboys, PE28 2UB 01487-82-3274
Establishing a Mailing Address P.O. Box number: PSC ________ Box __________ APO AE ____________ 1. Have newcomer fax a copy of their orders to you. 2. Take the orders to the post office of choice (Alconbury or Molesworth) to have a box set up for the newcomer. This can be accomplished 60 days or less from newcomer’s arrival.
Do you want to be picked up at the airport?
Yes or No
If yes, dates: _________ Discuss this fully with your Newcomer, they need to understand the time/expenses involved Time: ________ Airport: ________ Airline/flight# ____ No. in party: _____ If you drive, what date will you be arriving? _________________________________ (provide your phone # so you can be called immediately upon arrival). Is there any specific information that you would like to be sent to you?
Incoming personnel can obtain the most up-to-date information on the Tri-Base community through the 501st Web-Site: http://www.501csw.usafe.af.mil/ Military One Source is provided by the Department of Defense at no cost to active duty and Military Home Front: It is a virtual extension of installation services. Visit Military OneSource today at www.militaryonesource.com or call 1800-342-9647 MilitaryHOMEFRONT is the official source information for all DoD Quality of Life programs and services for Service members and their families, military leaders and service providers. http://www.militaryhomefront.dod.mil Alternatively, they can check out AF Crossroads: http://www.afcrossroads.com this site contains photos in the photo gallery and numerous links they will find useful. It also includes an active spouse’s forum so spouses can network with each other prior to their arrival.