April is the Month of the Military Child. With all the support that veterans receive, it is easy to sometimes overlook the sacrifices made by veteran family members. This month was established and is sponsored by the Departed of Defense Education Activity (DoDEA). Defense Secretary Caspar Weinberger created the Month of the Military Child in 1986, and the DoDEA has honored it ever since. During the Month of the Military Child, we highlight how important the family and children are for our service men and women.
Many military children deal with circumstances that are beyond their control, such as a parent or guardian who is serving away from home or overseas. It is important to honor and validate a military child’s feelings. It helps them understand that although they are giving up time with a parent or loved one temporarily, it is for a greater purpose. It may also inspire them to one day serve their country like their parents or guardians.
There are different ways to celebrate the Month of the Military Child. You can look for events in your local communities, with military organizations, and schools. If there are no events, maybe suggest that one be created. A list of ideas for celebrating may be accessed at https://mic3.net/wp-content/uploads/2021/12/5d-2022-Purple-Up-Ideas.pdf. You can also celebrate by wearing purple on Purple Up! For Military Kids Day on April 15. This day was created by the DoDEA to recognize military children during the month of April.
The spouse or dependent child of a veteran or service member may qualify for certain benefits such as health care, and life insurance. Other dependent benefits include assistance with employment, education and training. Benefits for military family members can be found here: https://veterans.wv.gov/Benefits/Pages/default.aspx. You can also learn more about federal benefits available to dependents at https://www.va.gov/family-member-benefits/#benefits-for-spouses-dependent.
Survivors of a veteran or service member may also qualify for benefits including burial cost assistance and survivor compensation.
Contact one of our Veteran Service Officers at a Benefits Office to find out more. You can find the closest Benefits Office here: https://veterans.wv.gov/field-office/Pages/default.aspx.
Resources for educators, military families and students may also be accessed on the Common Ground Partnership’s homepage at https://wvde.us/commonground/.