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Month of the Military Child: Support for military kids is critical

Over the last year, families all over the world have been tested – emotionally and physically – by COVID-19. Frontline workers like our U.S. service members have not stopped throughout this pandemic and this service takes a toll on them as well as their kids. That’s why during this April’s Month of the Military Child, celebrating and supporting military children is more important than ever. The American Red Cross of Orange County offers free services for military families during the Month of the Military Child, and all year-round.

“All members of a military family serve, including military children who often experience frequent moves, multiple schools, parental separation and, in some cases, the loss of a parent,” said Steve Alt, Service to the Armed Forces Director at the American Red Cross Southern California Region. “At the American Red Cross, we know that support for military families as a whole helps develops strong, resilient military kids.”

Throughout this last year, U.S. military families have faced personal hardships due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Military children across the country have experienced prolonged separation from parents due to extended deployments, military spouses have lost their jobs resulting in financial insecurity, and whole families have been separated from their support systems, even though life has not paused during the pandemic. In light of that, extra support has been needed to safeguard military kids and families from the added emotional, financial and physical stress felt by many.

In Orange County, military children and parents can find a variety of Red Cross resources to get additional support:

  • Virtual mental wellness courses offered by mental health professionals are available for kids and parents to combat feelings of stress. A variety of courses are available to help military families connect during this difficult time, including tips for service members on how to smoothly reconnect with their children when they return from deployments and planning for how to manage extended periods of separation.
  • Families facing financial hardship can apply for financial assistance through the Red Cross in conjunction with the Military Aid Societies by calling the Red Cross Hero Care Network toll-free at 1-877-272-7337 or by contacting their local Red Cross.
  • If a military child or spouse experiences an emergency, they can send an emergency message to the deployed parent to alert them through our Red Cross Hero Care Network by calling toll-free at 1-877-272-7337, visiting redcross.org/herocarenetwork or by downloading and sending a message through the Red Cross Hero Care App. The American Red Cross Hero Care Center is available 7 days a week, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
This article was released by the American Red Cross.