Military kids face unique challenges such as frequent family moves and separations from parents due to deployments. Sometimes military kids may also be living with family members who are themselves dealing with challenges such as post-traumatic stress, physical disabilities, or other issues. These kinds of stressors can affect the health and well-being of military kids.
The National Center for Telehealth & Technology, an agency of the Department of Defense, created Military Kids Connect (MKC), an online community for military children (ages 6-17 years old) that provides access to age-appropriate resources to support children dealing with the unique psychological challenges of military life. Through games, informative activities, and online forums, military kids can share their experiences while reinforcing their resilience and coping skills.
The MKC site features separate tracks for Kids (ages 6-8), Tweens (ages 9-12), Teens, (ages 13-17), Parents/Caregivers, and Educators:
- Informative activities, fun games, and helpful videos
- Online forum for teens and tweens to share experiences with peers
- Safety first: This is a pre-moderated online forum designed to ensure no personally identifiable information is shared.
- Resources to assist military parents in helping their kids cope with deployment separations and moves (e.g., PCSs & ETSs)
- Help with talking to military kids about tough topics like PTSD, physical injury, grief and loss, and traumatic brain injury
- Information to help educators better understand military life and best practices when working with military students
- Lesson plans for military kids and their civilian peers
- Resources to empower educators to better help their military students cope with deployment separations, moves, and other tough topics that can sometimes be associated with military life
Visit the MKC website to learn more: http://militarykidsconnect.dcoe.mil/
The Clearinghouse for Military Family Readiness at Penn State can assist in these efforts to help military kids remain resilient by providing the right tools and information to the professionals serving military families. We have reviewed the evidence base behind over 1,000 programs. Click here to try our interactive, searchable database: https://www.continuum.militaryfamilies.psu.edu/search?show=all Additionally, our Technical Assistance team stands ready to help you find, implement, and evaluate evidence-based programs and practices. Technical assistance agents may be reached through live chat, phone 1-877-382-9185, or email Monday through Friday from 9 AM until 5 PM ET.
National Center for Telehealth & Technology. (2016). Military Kids Connect (MKC) [Website]. Retrieved from http://militarykidsconnect.dcoe.mil/about-us