Honoring “Mighty Military Children” and Learning from Their Resilience

What all kids can learn from military kids when it comes to building strength

From the LifeMinute.TV Team

April 14, 2022

April is the Month of the Military Child. One organization is honoring and caring for them while letting parents know what they can learn from military children to help build resilience in their own kids.

Cohen Veterans Network (CVN) is a national not-for-profit organization providing high-quality, accessible mental health services to post-9/11 veterans, service members, and their families. Since its inception in 2016, the network has cared for 30,000 individuals with children making up 16% of clients served.

“Military children are at the heart of what we do in support of military families across the country every day," says CEO Dr. Anthony Hassan.

CVN this month celebrates "mighty military kids" for their strength and resilience. These children often adapt to change and overcome the unique challenges associated with military life. In fact, since 2001, two million military children have had a parent deployed, and military families relocate three times more often than civilian families.

When it comes to building resilience, what can all kids learn from mighty military kids? CVN has some strategies parents can employ to foster resilience in their children. This includes creating a daily routine.

“You can encourage a sense of stability by establishing and maintaining a routine - while teaching flexibility," says Dr. Hassan. "Talk through how your child might adapt if a plan were to get interrupted."

Dr. Hassan suggests reframing challenges too. If faced with a difficulty or disappointment, help your child focus on what they have instead of what they’ve lost. Acknowledge their feelings, then discuss any opportunities the challenge might present.

Lastly, Dr. Hassan says parents can assist their children in setting attainable goals by helping them break them down into smaller steps. This will help focus their attention on one task at a time, building resilience to move forward as different challenges arise.

As CVN celebrates military kids, they are inviting military families and supporters everywhere to join in by sharing photos and anecdotes of military children, both past and present, on social media using #mightymilitarykids.

CVN has also developed a list of resources that provides essential support to military children and downloadable activity sheets for military families. Visit cohenveteransnetwork.org/militarykids for more information.

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