HomeNewsArticle Display

November honors military families' sacrifices, contributions

WASHINGTON (AFNS) --

Service members' families also serve the nation and are the force behind the total force, a senior Defense Department official said yesterday.

 

"Our military members are as effective as they can be because of the support their families provide them," Barbara Thompson, the director of DOD's office of family policy and children and youth told American Forces Press Service and the Pentagon Channel. "(DOD) wants to make sure the people who are important in the lives of our service members -- spouses, children, parents, partners, aunts, uncles, siblings and cousins -- are part of the military family."

 

Military Family Month recognizes the sacrifices and contributions that family members make for national security, Thompson said, adding that it's important for families to know the country appreciates their tireless efforts to support their service members and communities.

 

During Military Family Month, military installations will vary in their celebrations to recognize families, and family support centers will offer information on what's available, Thompson said. Year-round, however, support services exist through the Family Readiness System to help family members navigate any challenges they might face in their military lifestyle, she added. The system also includes resources for families who don't live on military installations.

 

And that's where there's a growing need for community support of military households, Thompson said. For example, DOD offers a system involving professionals in a variety of fields, agencies, programs and services who are educated to meet the needs of military families.

 

Two other initiatives that bring civilian resources together with military needs are the Military Families Learning Network and the How to Help program.

 

The network comprises programs, services, people and agencies that promote quality of life for service members and their families, Thompson explained. Through the network, service members and families learn to take on new skills and challenges in all stages of their military life. The network primarily focuses on personal finance, child care, family development and network literacy, she added, but it is expected to expand to include military caregivers, community capacity building and relocation services.

 

In the How to Help program, early childhood educators, extended family, friends, neighbors, financial professionals and experts in higher education also have learned how to help military families, using evidence-based guidance on how to help families with practical suggestions and links to community resources, she said.

 

And individually, people who live in communities with military families can help to support their service member neighbors in several ways, Thompson said.

 

"People in the civilian sector who are not affiliated with the military need to realize that military members are an integral part of their communities," she said. "It's important to start by asking a question such as 'Have you served, or are you serving? And how can I help?'"

 

One way people in the civilian community can begin to help their military neighbors is to learn about Joining Forces, an initiative established two years ago by First Lady Michelle Obama and Vice President Joe Biden's wife, Dr. Jill Biden, to mobilize support from every sector of American society to help service members, their families and veterans, Thompson suggested.

 

Another community option to help support service members and their families is the Military OneSource website, which explains the military lifestyle and families' particular needs while living off an installation and in a neighborhood.

 

"It's important for the community to know where to go if they want to support military members and their families ... especially during this month, since we're recognizing military families," Thompson said.

Engage

Facebook Twitter
RT @DepSecDef: Congratulations to Barbara Barrett on confirmation as the 25th Secretary of the @usairforce. A businesswoman, attorney, dipl…
RT @30thSpaceWing: #DYK –VAFB is partially powered by a 200 acre, 28MW solar array, reducing its electrical demand by 35%, saving the base…
RT @WrightPattAFB: An @AFResearchLab team recently delivered version 2.0 of the Survival Health Awareness Responders Kit (SHARK) to @usairf
Watch the video of Secretary of the Air Force Barbara Barrett being sworn in. Click the link to learn more about… https://t.co/agE0mT2cFj
RT @EsperDoD: Congratulations to Barbara Barrett, the 25th @SecAFOfficial. I know she will lead the charge to modernize @usairforce operati…
RT @GenDaveGoldfein: It’s a great day to be an Airman. Today Barbara Barrett officially became our 25th @SecAFOfficial. The men and women…
RT @DeptofDefense: Fill em up! ⛽ KC-135 Stratotankers from @RAFMildenhall refueled over 80 F-15s in a two-day exercise, offloading 480,000…
RT @SecAFOfficial: Today I officially became the 25th Secretary of the #AirForce. I'm conscious of the extraordinary privilege of working w…
RT @HQUSAFEPA: #BomberTaskForceEurope 20-1 is in full swing and B-52s from @TeamBarksdale are operating out of RAF Fairford to improve bomb…
RT @EsperDoD: During #CyberSecurityAwarenessMonth, I challenge all @DeptofDefense employees to stay committed, ensuring they are following…
RT @AirNatlGuard: Special Delivery! ✈️📦 The @109thAW teamed up with the @RCAF_ARC for Operation Boxtop, an annual resupply mission to suppo…
We strive to increase our Airmen's lethality and capabilities. Learn about firefighters leading the cost-effective… https://t.co/Nrgx3BSrtl
RT @EsperDoD: Congratulations to Barbara Barrett for her overwhelming bipartisan confirmation by @SenateGOP & @SenateDems to be the 25th Se…
Gen. Stephen Wilson visited Houston to help #SpaceCity celebrate #AstronautWeek. He visited @spacecenterhouston and… https://t.co/Nymvd98qvQ
Our Airmen continuously work to strengthen our alliances. Learn more about how EOD partnered with Niger Armed Force… https://t.co/VwRIOnBokn
Stay tuned for an upcoming episode of #HoustonWeHavePodcast by @NASA_Johnson where Gen Wilson joins Air Force Colon… https://t.co/Y7u9cHFtOt
RT @GenDaveGoldfein: This is an exciting day for our Air Force. Secretary Barrett brings an incredible background and a level of strategic…
The Senate has confirmed the 25th Secretary of the Air Force, Barbara Barrett. https://t.co/Y6kDGD5eds
RT @DoDHealth: #DYK? Many @TRICARE beneficiaries may qualify to purchase vision insurance through the Federal Employees Dental and Vision I…