Month of the Military Child: Resources to Support MilKids and Their Families
It’s often said that the whole family serves. The stress of deployments, new PCS orders, and concerns about safety can weigh heavily on all family members. That’s why the Bob Woodruff Foundation is investing in resources to help military kids thrive.
Being a military child involves adapting to new experiences, managing big responsibilities, and making exceptional sacrifices. When a parent is on active duty, moving from place to place requires constantly changing schools and friends. When a parent is deployed, they can miss bedtimes and milestones. According to a Syracuse University study, military children outnumber U.S troops, by a 1.4 to 1 ratio. The Department of Defense reports that that number will continue to grow. Active-duty service members are having kids younger and more often, as is indicated by the average age of a military child being under five years old.
When a parent comes home with an injury, kids often step up to help around the house. The White House reports there are about 2.3 million American children who take on crucial caregiving roles. These “Hidden Helpers” of all ages provide much-needed support for veteran family members.
Despite the daily challenges they face, military children are extremely resilient. Finding resources can be strenuous, but the Bob Woodruff Foundation has invested in valuable resources to help military kids and their families thrive.
- Sesame Workshop | We proudly funded Sesame Workshop to launch Sesame Street for Military Families: Caregiving, an initiative to support military and veteran families as they care for a wounded, ill, or injured parent or relative. With a host of research-based resources – including articles, worksheets, games, and videos starring the Sesame Street Muppets – Sesame Street for Military Families: Caregiving addresses the specific challenges of family-based care from a child’s perspective.
- Tuesday’s Children | Tuesday’s Children addresses the needs of military families in all stages of recovery following the loss of a family member. The cornerstone of Tuesday’s Children’s program, Youth Mentoring, encourages and supports mutually beneficial, long standing relationships between adult role models and children ages 8-18. With an NFL-BWF grant, Tuesday’s Children is improving the emotional, academic, and behavioral outcomes of Gold Star children, siblings, and surviving family members nationwide through a combination of Youth Mentoring and Career Resource Center programming.
- Hidden Helpers Coalition | The Elizabeth Dole Foundation (EDF) and Wounded Warrior Project, with the support of more than 50 public and private organizations including The Bob Woodruff Foundation, launched the Hidden Helpers Coalition in 2021. This campaign complements EDF’s “Hidden Heroes” campaign and is specifically aimed at supporting the more than 2.3 million children who provide caregiving services for their military parents.