April is recognized as the Month of the Military Child. With over 1.6 million military children living in and outside the U.S., it’s important to highlight the unique challenges that kids face with their parents serving in the military.
Why the Month of the Military Child is Important
Military children are an underrepresented sector of the armed forces community, but this month is set aside to show appreciation for their daily sacrifices and celebrates their role as “MilKids.” On average, military families move every two to three years. Moving to a new military base or city not only affects a child’s schooling, but also impacts their social and support networks. Having to uproot with their families every few years makes developing a reliable routine very difficult. This is only made harder with a parent’s deployment overseas – which impacts daily communication and can also mean changes in the roles and responsibilities within the family.
How We Can Support Military Children and Families
During the Month of the Military Child unique services that address common struggles for both Milkids and their parents are spotlighted. This year’s theme of “Taking Care of Our Military Children,” promotes the resources, programs and services available to our military families. These resources include everything from supporting young children and families through the New Parent Support Program to connecting military families to local Boys & Girls clubs. The Department of Defense has even sponsored an online organization that helps MilKids connect with one another.
Here are several ways you can celebrate and support the military children in your life this month:
Wear purple – Wear purple on Purple Up! Day, April 15, to show your appreciation for our extraordinary MilKids. Share your photos and include #mygova_com.
Check out the wealth of resources available to military children and parents – Invite your network to explore and share the podcasts, webinars and other resources available to military-connected children, youth and teens, and their parents. For valuable financial tips and resources specific to military families, register for The Edge – it’s 100% free to the military community and covers everything from savings to budgeting to reducing debt.
Spread the word about FREE MilKid appreciation items – Throughout the month of April, fun items – like Pop Its, lunch boxes, backpack pins and sticker sheets – will be offered to families free of charge.
Post on social media – Share content on your social channels to amplify efforts and promote resources that support military youth. Free sample content is available.