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 Feb 19 2021

Adapted concept ensures critical Air training continues safely

POGGIO RENATICO, Italy - Fully compliant with anti-pandemic precautions, the first iteration of the Initial Functional Training in 2021 finished at NATO's Deployable Air Command and Control Centre (DACCC) in Poggio Renatico on February 19, graduating 15 students from AIRCOM, satellite commands and the NATO Force Structure.

The two-week Initial Functional JFAC Training (IFJT) course provides students with the full training required to supplement the NATO Command Structure Joint Force Air Component, a command and control centre that plans and executes the delivery of NATO Air Power across the entire spectrum of joint operations. Graduates from the course are cleared to participate in the subsequent exercise to receive their “mission ready” status. 

We are making a  common effort here  demonstrating our resilience and ability to perform our tasks under challenging restrictions imposed by the pandemic

“I am glad to have the opportunity to host all of you here in the common effort of demonstrating our resilience and ability to perform our tasks also under the proving and challenging restrictions imposed by the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Italian Air Force Major General Claudio Gabellini, Commander of the DACCC.

During the ongoing pandemic, the DACCC continues to be the NATO-designated training entity responsible  for  providing Air

Command and Control courses, specifically IFJT. “The Centre has never stopped its effort to accomplish this mission and introduced tools such as advance distributed learning and mobile training teams to overcome international travel restrictions and comply with safety precautions,” said Major General Gabellini. 

“Due to IFJT’s practical portions and the Air Planning tools in use, it is not feasible to conduct the course completely remotely using e-learning methods,” General Gabellini continued to say. “Therefore my team worked hard to have all the necessary health protection means in place to ensure a safe training environment and run the course in in-person mode,” he added. Safety precautions include the use of masks, social distancing (resulting in limited course attendance), COVID-19 testing and the introduction of air purifiers supplying enhanced air filtration to the training rooms. 

he IFJT 21-01 also featured a new updated scenario challenging the students in a more realistic environment that mirrored real-world conditions and allowed then to tackle most likely current and future threats. A bespoke IT platform was introduced that is easily deployable with a mobile training team for instruction programmes provided to the NATO Command.

Story by Alllied Air Command Public Affairs Office based on input provided by the Deployable Air Command and Control Centre

The DACCC Commander, Major General Claudio Gabellini, welcomed participants of the IFJT course highlighting the importance of continuing mission-essential training and complying with anti-pandemic precautions. Photo courtesy DACCC.
The training audience and instructors during the first IFJT course at the DACCC in 2021. Participants received their graduation certificate at the end of the course. Photo courtesy DACCC.
The DACCC Deputy Commander, Brigadier General Christoph Pliet, presented the certificates to the 15 IFJT course participants. The first course in 2021 was conducted in compliance with anti-pandemic precautions and featured a new updated realistic training environment. Photo courtesy DACCC.

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