The month of November is recognized as Military Family Appreciation Month. During this time, we’re all able to extend a heartfelt thanks to the families of 1.3 million active duty military and more than 800,000 reserve members of the Armed Forces.

Through deployments, frequent moves, and new cultural experiences, there is no doubt that military families face many challenges that sometimes affect children’s experiences with and performance in school. However, these challenges can also serve as opportunities. In fact, many children in military families have found success through online learning schools.

Those challenges and opportunities presented to military families are recognized nationwide this month, and many companies are doing what they can to help. Here are a few ideas on how your family can participate in Military Family Appreciation Month and show your thanks:

Make a Card

Child's card that says 'we pray for you'

Photo by Tech. Sgt. Daniel Heaton, 156th Airlift Wing 10.16.2017 PUERTO RICO

It’s such a simple gesture, yet your words may be just the thanks, encouragement, or reassurance they need. Sit down with your kids and have a discussion about the military, and how their families are affected daily, so they can understand the true meaning behind the card.

 

Buy Tickets to Local Attractions, Museums, and Sporting Events that Support the Military

event with dog training

Photo by Kemberly Groue, 81st Training Wing / Public Affairs 10.05.2017 BILOXI, MS, UNITED STATES

You don’t have to spend a lot of money to have family fun. There is so much free fun to be had, and chances are there are great activities in your very own community or one nearby. You should be able to find local events that support the military on your city’s events page.

 

Send a Care Package

Three people preparing care packages

Photo by Airman 1st Class Nicholas Dutton, 156th Airlift Wing 10.10.2017 MUNIZ AIR NATIONAL GUARD BASE, CAROLINA, PUERTO RICO

Deployed troops have to go without many things we take for granted each and every day. By putting together a care package of groceries, first aid items, toiletries, books, etc., you can really make an impact on someone who is away from their family and their home. The United Stated States Postal Service (USPS) offers a free “Military Care Kit” with the necessary supplies for sending packages overseas, and you can find a list of items items and shipping info here.

Ask Someone About Their Service

children talking to a soldier

Photo by Master Sgt. Joshua DeMotts, 1st Combat Camera Squadron 10.05.2017 ARECIBO, AL, UNITED STATES

Chances are you know someone who has served in the military, but do you truly know their story? Some questions to get started are: What did you do in the military? How long did you serve? What was your favorite moment in all your time in the service? Did anyone else in your family serve? Why did you choose to go into the service branch you did?

Make a Donation

Photo by Staff Sgt. Ryan Campbell, 107th Attack Wing 10.22.2017 NIAGRA FALLS, NY, UNITED STATES

There are plenty of wonderful organizations that offer all manner of support, services, and appreciation for our service members. If you want to support veterans and servicemen and women this November (or any time during the year), here are a few good places to start.

Fly a Flag

soldier saluting the flag

Photo by Airman 1st Class Haley Stevens 432d Wing/Public Affairs 10.05.2017 CREECH AIR FORCE BASE, NV, UNITED STATES

It’s one of the simplest ways to show your support for our country and the millions of service men, but make sure you follow the rules for display. Not exactly sure what those are? Check out the American Flag Rules You Should Know on Learning Liftoff.

 

Featured image by Staff Sgt. Sharilyn Wells, U.S. Army Civil Affairs and Psychological Operations Command (Airborne) 03.25.2012 KALAMAZOO, MI, UNITED STATES

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