by Sara Croymans, MEd, Extension Educator, University of Minnesota Extension and PI for MFLN Family Transitions.
According to the 2019 Demographics Profile there were 1,644,456 total military children in 2019. More military children are younger, as shown in the pie chart below.
Celebrating Military Children
Have you taken steps to celebrate April, Month of the Military Child (MOMC)? This special month, sponsored by the Department of Defense Military Community and Family Policy, is a time to recognize military families and their children for the daily sacrifices they make and the challenges they overcome. This year, the theme of MOMC is “You’re Everything!”.
Month of the Military Child
To celebrate Month of the Military child check out events and resources from the Office of Military Community and Family Policy and their partners.
Encourage your community to celebrate Purple Up Day to show appreciation for our amazing military kids. Check with your installation or state reserve or guard family program to see which day they are celebrating. Share your photos and stories on social media using #PurpleUp21.
Participate in one or more of the Military OneSource virtual events on Facebook Live throughout April.. A variety of presenters and topics are offered. Trevor Romain, children’s book author, illustrator and speaker, will present a four-part series on Tuesdays on kindness, resilience, embracing change and staying connected. On Fridays, Dr. Kenneth Ginsburg, Professor of Pediatrics at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, will discuss resilience in the face of crisis, parenting in an age of uncertainty, and the power of connection.
Encourage the military families you work with to order a MilKids Appreciation Kit for their children, which includes lots of fun things, including a photo frame, reusable face mask, child’s passport, and more.
Share your support for military kids by including the You’re Everything campaign emblem in your communications and on promotional materials and use the Department of Defense-wide hashtag #MOMC2021 and #PurpleUp21.
Military OneSource invites military families and kids to share about themselves by sharing pictures of their family or community wearing purple to celebrate Purple Up! Day; provide a quote about what it’s like to be a military kid; write a blog post about a memorable military life experience, or share artwork (paintings, drawings, poems, videos or musical recordings) about your experience being part of the military community. All items can be emailed to MOMC2021@militaryonesource.mil.
You can find more information about these MOMC events and resources in the 2021 Month of the Military Child Toolkit found on the Military OneSource website. The Toolkit includes a fantastic Social Media Toolkit with social media messages and images.
- MFLN Family Transitions blog post Adapting Child & Youth Programming During COVID – An Interview with Laura Groeneweg. Laura, MN National Guard Child and Youth Program Lead, shares how they have adapted programming this past year and shares information on their plans for a virtual MOMC.
- Sesame Street for Military Families celebrates the unique role of military children by offering a wide range of resources for young children, parents and providers, from engaging videos and fun apps to helpful tip sheets and articles.
- The Center for Parent and Teen Communication (based within the Division of Adolescent Medicine at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia) offers free, practical, science-based strategies for strengthening family connections and building youth prepared to thrive.
This blog post was written by Sara Croymans, MEd, AFC, University of Minnesota Extension Educator, member of the MFLN Family Transitions team, military spouse and mother. Family Transitions provides education, resources and networking opportunities for professionals working with military families to build resilience and navigate life cycle transitions. Engage with the MFLN Family Transitions team on our website, Facebook, and Twitter.