Official: Take Time to Honor Military Kids’ Service
By Elaine Sanchez
American Forces Press Service
WASHINGTON, March 30, 2012 – Children of U.S. service members around the world will be honored throughout April for their contributions to their families’ well-being and sacrifices on behalf of the nation, a Defense Department official said.
Each April, Americans pause to recognize the nation’s 1.8 million military children during the Month of the Military Child.
“It’s really important to recognize that military children also serve,” Barbara Thompson, director of military community and family policy, children and youth, told the Pentagon Channel and American Forces Press Service.
It’s also important, Thompson said, to take time to let military children “know how proud we are as Americans that they … are supporting mom or dad in uniform, who is making great sacrifices for this country.”
While frequent moves and school transitions can be challenging, Thompson said she believes the most challenging endeavor a military child has to endure is a parental separation due to deployment.
“While we’ve made great strides with technology and Skype … it’s not the same as having your mom or dad at your baseball game or high school graduation or one of your birthday parties,” she said.
These separations can have a “serious impact” on military families’ well-being, Thompson noted, particularly on the children. Younger children may experience separation and attachment issues, while older children may engage in risky behaviors, she explained....
The children ALSO serve.