by Samantha Wagner, senior manager of marketing and content, ICMA
April marks the nation's "Month of the Military Child," a time to honor military youth in our communities. The designated month is sponsored by the Department of Defense Military Community and Family Policy, and is a time to applaud military families and their children for the daily sacrifices they make and the challenges they overcome.
Communities such as Des Moines, Iowa; Alamogordo, New Mexico; and Clearfield, Utah, to name a few, celebrate the Month of the Military Child and recognize the sacrifice that military children make when their parent or both parents are in the military. But after the monthly celebration concludes, what else can a community do to keep military children and families engaged? Here are some ideas, best practices, and tools for your community.
There are approximately a million children of active duty military in the United States. Most attend public school, move multiple times before finishing high school, and must cope with a parent being absent for extended periods of time. Schools don't always know how to offer support to these children, but new initiatives shared in this story from PBS News Hour are trying to change that. >> Read More from PBS
Given that more than 70 percent of military families around the country currently live “outside the gate” of military installations, providing support and services to military families in their neighborhoods is critical. Read this guide from the National Military Family Association for advice on how to engage this audience and get them involved in your community. >> Access the Guide
The Connecticut State Library, Division of Library Development provides qualitative and quantitative approaches to help museums and libraries bring people together and better serve veterans and military families. The resources include a selection of topics, discussion-starters, data gathering, and facilitation tools that can be used to start or guide community development work. >> Access the tools
Focus on community-level efforts by utilizing the tools and best practices from Joining Community Forces. >> Learn More