November is Military Family Month, and we take this opportunity to appreciate the continuous sacrifices and contributions of our military families. The observance recognizes the challenges family members face in support of their loved ones in uniform. Without their commitment and dedication, it would be impossible for our military to remain organized and focused. They are our patriots who support their family members, while enriching the communities they call home. This month honors the parents and children who stay behind and love their family members on active duty to protect the interests of their nation.
History of Military Family Month
The dedication and courage of military families are an inspiration to all of us. They show exceptional resilience and courage in facing the challenging demands of a military lifestyle. And for these unique sacrifices, these military families deserve all our recognition and appreciation. In 1996 the U.S. government, along with the Armed Services YMCA, established Military Families Month. Each year, the President signs a proclamation declaring November as Military Families Month. This annual proclamation honors the commitments and sacrifices made by the families of our nation’s service members.
The sacrifices and the dedication of our nation’s military families often go unnoticed. Constant moves, job changes, uprooting, and long periods of separation leave these families in tremendous amounts of stress. The spouses and children struggle when service members face non-stop deployments, and sometimes have a difficult time adjusting when the service members return. Despite all the difficulties, the military families provide our service members with immense encouragement and love, while managing the home front during deployments. We understand that the families also serve our nation, and we are honored to pay tribute to them.
As the winter holiday season approaches, families across the world come together to celebrate traditions. November is Military Families Month, and it is a time to recognize the sacrifices and pay tribute to our service members and their families, who are separated this holiday season. We take this opportunity to thank our military families for the tremendous contribution, strength, and dedication they show in support of our service members and our nation.
Military Family Month timeline
The Act is passed by Congress, with the government acknowledging military families as a military responsibility.
Congress passes the Dependents Medical Care Act, which provides full health benefits to families.
Women service members receive the same dependency entitlements as men after a Supreme Court ruling.
‘Military brat’ and filmmaker, Donna Musil, releases the documentary, “Brats: Our Journey Home”, which looks at the adventure and challenges shared by the children of military families.
Military Family Month FAQs
What does it mean to be a military family?
Military families have one or more family members on duty in the military branches of the nation and thus know what service to their country means.
What should I include in my military family month care packet?
Typically, the packet comes with a letter from the president and suggestions for activities, and there are also projects that give toys and little gifts to the family members of a deployed soldier.
What are the branches of the U.S. military?
The U.S. military has six components: the Air Force, Army, Coast Guard, Marine Corps, Navy, and, recently, Space Force.
How to Observe Military Family Month
Thank our military families
Say thank you! Thank the military families for their sacrifices. You can write them a personal thank you note or even post your gratitude on social media. Use #MilitaryFamilyMonth to post on social media.
Volunteer your time
Offer any help you can to show your support. Offer to babysit, cut the grass, run errands for military spouses, who are taking care of everything all alone. Just ask your military families how you can support them.
Participate in activities to honor the families
Military families are honored with many events throughout the month of November. Many organizations in your town or city host dinners, webinars, etc. Participate in these events to show your appreciation for the military families.
5 Facts About Military Families
There are 84,000 military personnel couples
These couples get deployed at the same time, leaving their young children in the care of their extended families.
Service members divorce less frequently
The military divorce rate was 3.1% in 2014, compared to a 3.6% civilian divorce rate.
Service members start families early
Service members are more likely to get married and have children at a younger age, as compared to civilians.
Male military spouses
Only 5% of military family members that stay behind are men.
Relocation rate very high
Military families relocate every two or three years, which is 10 times more often than civilian families.
Why is Military Family Month Important
Military families are our unsung heroes
The dedication and contributions of military families often go unnoticed. Without their contributions, the military won’t be able to survive, which is why this month honors all the members of their families.
They deserve to be honored
Families of service members face constant stress and obstacles when their spouses or parents are deployed. Taking care of everything single-handedly, while worrying about their spouse’s safety, can be physically and psychologically overwhelming. A little show of appreciation is the least we can do to honor them.
Appreciation events are held
Events are organized all month long to honor the military families. Many organizations host dinners, webinars, and educational opportunities to thank the families of our service members.
Military Family Month dates