There are currently 1.8 million children with one or more parent serving in the military. In 1986, Secretary of Defense Caspar W. Weinberger designated each April as “The Month of the Military Child” to recognize the special contribution that the military child makes as their parent or parents serve our nation.
While we often hear about the impact deployments can have on service members, the toll that it can take on military children is often overlooked. According to a recent study by the Journal of Adolescent Health, youth with parents (and siblings) in the military have a greater risk of mental health issues, especially depression and suicidal thoughts. While the majority of military kids are doing well, many kids who are unable to attend a base school lack support and understanding from their civilian teachers, principals and community. With more and more troops returning home every day, there will be an even greater need to provide these kids with increased support and resources.
To help provide these incredible kids and their families, the Red Cross provides Reconnection Workshops on Relating to Children to help military families address the challenges faced by today’s military kids. This module provides parents with the valuable skills to help parents understand how children of different ages might respond to stress during reunions following long absences, empowering parents to help their children better adapt.
To learn more about Reconnections Workshops or to schedule one today for your family, please email Reconnection@redcross.org.
Filed under: SAF