You’ve probably heard people say that April is The Month of the Military Child. If you are affiliated with the military and have children or if you know any military kids, often referred to as “Military Brats” then you know that they are some special individuals.

I will admit I’ve seen flyers and posters for years and I just recently learned the meaning behind the official flower. The dandelion is a perfect representation because they put down roots almost anywhere and they are almost impossible to destroy. Dandelions survive in a broad range of climates; and like military kids, they bloom anywhere the winds carry them. Dandelions also symbolize happiness, joy, perseverance, endurance, and hope.

We get to celebrate military kids during the month of April but we also get to recognize them as the military’s most unsung heroes on Purple Up! Day. On this day students and families are encouraged to wear purple to show support. It also signifies the unique sacrifices military children make and the challenges they overcome.

Fun Fact: The color purple indicates support for all branches of the U.S. Armed Forces through a combination of their colors:

  • Air Force Blue
  • Army Green
  • Navy Blue
  • Marine Red
  • Coast Guard Blue

Celebrate and show your support by doing the following:

  • Check out the activities on your installation. Each year there are many activities that range from parades and special events at the youth center and library.
  • Connect. Show support by doing some activities that your military child will love. This can be anything from a special meal, getting ice cream, or watching a movie, and don’t forget talking is a great way to connect and understand their perspective.
  • Reconnect. If you have military friends this is a great time to reconnect via phone or video call. Although military kids move around they have friends and loved ones all over the world that they love to hear from.

Military kids move frequently, typically every two to four years (more than three times the national average). Constant moves mean starting over at school which can take a toll. They also have to learn to cope when their parents deploy which can be stressful. Being a military child can be tough but it also has some positives such as experiencing new cultures and meeting people from different backgrounds. Military children get to travel the world and they are so resilient.

Celebrate your military child during the month of April and don’t forget to wear purple. Be sure to check out the activities on your installation and connect/reconnect to show your support.