With more than 500 U.S. military installations around the world, some active duty families get to see a lot of America and even a few countries overseas. Kids may have lived in popular locations like Germany, Japan, Korea, England, or Italy for several years at a time. They may have even picked up a second language. In a 2007 report on Army families, 81 percent of adults who were raised in the Army reported speaking one or two languages other than English while growing up.
The Armed Forces are generally recognized as a diverse force. Between moving around and experiencing the diverse nature of the Service, military kids learn how to fit in just about anywhere and make new friends fast.
Dealing with the mobility of military life can be tough. But Operation Purple® kids saw the upside—vacations in between PCS’s (permanent change of stations), international travel, and cool gifts from mom or dad’s unaccompanied tours. No matter the Service, military kids can embrace the positive parts of change. What an incredible life lesson to learn so young! Help them keep that perspective with these strategies:
Military Child Initiative “Building Resilient Kids” web-based course offered by Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and the Johns Hopkins Center on School, Family and Community Partnerships. Visit www.jhsph.edu/mci/training_course for more information.
Positive Psychology—Geared for older children and adults, this site has helpful information on learning to use personal strengths to deal with life’s challenges. Visit www.authentichappiness.org for more information.