International Spouse Group at Wright-Patt hosts traditional Thanksgiving luncheon for members

  • Published
  • By Jonathan Tharp, AF Security Assistance and Cooperation Directorate
WRIGHT-PATTERSON AFB, Ohio (AFLCMC) – The International Spouse Group (ISG) hosted its annual traditional Thanksgiving Luncheon for members on Nov. 5.

This event is a unique opportunity for foreign members to experience the traditional American Thanksgiving and come together as a family in their "home away from home." The U.S. members cook the turkey, fixings and side dishes, and all the foreign members bring a dish from their country to share if they wish.

Spouses and families from a variety countries participate including Argentina, Austria, Chile, Germany, Guatemala, Italy, Japan, Latvia, Mexico, Nigeria, Panama, Slovakia, Spain, South Korea.

“It is always fun to experience each culture and cuisine because we may have the same dish just named differently from one country to another, or the same ingredients served in a different way!” highlighted  Ms. Inma Kusinerek, ISG President. “One example is the centuries old Spanish chickpea-based stew ‘Cocido,’ which has Jewish roots in ‘Adafina’ and very few people know that.”

Formed in the early 1970s, the ISG is a social and community service group that supports the spouses of Foreign Liaison Officers (FLO) assigned to the Air Force Life Cycle Management Center’s Air Force Security Assistance and Cooperation Directorate (AFSAC) at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, supporting various foreign military sales (FMS) cases. Partnered with AFSAC, the ISG mission is to build long-term relationships with international spouses and community, being mindful of cultures while adapting and responding to the needs and priorities of our members.

“Throughout the year, the ISG hosts a variety of events to support the spouses of international partner military stationed at WPAFB,” explained Kusnierek. “The ISG assists international spouses with adjusting to the local WPAFB and Dayton, Ohio, communities.”

The ISG does not have membership fees, as the ISG’s main funding comes through participation in the International Fair which occurs in April. From the event proceeds, the ISG provides an annual college scholarship to an active, eligible international member and/or a college-bound dependent. Scholarship recipients are chosen by an independent board of judges.

The ISG hosts monthly meetings on the first Friday of every month that provide the opportunity for exciting and lasting friendships while allowing members to experience both the uniqueness and similarities of all cultures. The members volunteer to provide food from their native countries during every gathering and participate in activities, go on visits, and help each other and the community in various ways. Children and family members are always welcome.

There are also weekly ISG meetings on Wednesdays from 10:00 am-12:00 pm to provide additional relationship building and support opportunities. “In the last five years I developed a conversational class geared to help the foreign spouses learn about the USA including lexicons, grocery shopping, and best time to purchase different items such as vehicles, insurance, or other lifestyle topic,” added Kusnierek.

The Foreign Military Sales (FMS) mission of AFSAC is more than just exporting defense articles, equipment, and services to partner nations. The heart of the FMS mission is building enduring relationships between the U.S. and its allies around the world. The ISG at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base plays an important role in building international relationships. If you are interested in learning more about the ISG or the FMS mission at AFSAC, then please email the AFSAC workflow: You can also visit the AFSAC public affairs website here: