Military Community and Family Policy Mission

The Office of the Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Military Community and Family Policy (MC&FP) is directly responsible for programs and policies establishing and supporting community quality of life (QOL) programs for service members and their families worldwide. This office also serves as the focal point for coordination of the broad range of QOL issues within the Department of Defense (DoD). Specifically, the Deputate performs the following functions:

  • provides for family support policies and programs in areas including family center operations, child care, youth programs, family advocacy, relocation, transition support services, and support during mobilization and deployment (including casualty affairs)
  • provides policy and management direction for dependents' education programs stateside and overseas to ensure educational services are uniform and high quality
  • establishes program policy for mission sustaining and basic community programs for Morale, Welfare and Recreation, and Voluntary and Post-Secondary Education
  • coordinates the services of nonprofit agencies such as the Red Cross, Armed Services YMCA and the USO
  • provides policy and program oversight to ensure military community QOL programs are designed and executed to support the needs of the post-drawdown force and the DoD mission
  • coordinates DoD oversight of the Armed Forces Retirement Home Board

Armed Forces Retirement Home

The Armed Forces Retirement Home (AFRH) is a one-of-a-kind independent federal agency established to care for veterans in three settings: independent living, assisted living, and long-term care. Services include physical activities, health care, arts and crafts, dining, travel, and social and cultural activities with campuses in Washington, DC and Gulfport, Mississippi.

Community Support for Families with Special Needs

The Office of Community Support for Families with Special Needs (OSN) ensures that military families with special needs receive direct services (policy and oversight of early intervention services and special education provided to military children from the military medical departments and the DoD schools); assignment coordination (policy and oversight of the Exceptional Family Member Program (EFMP) enrollment and assignment coordination function); and family support (policy and oversight of the expansion of the EFMP family support function).

Defense Commissary Agency

The Defense Commissary Agency (DeCA), with headquarters at Fort Lee, Virginia, operates a world-wide system of commissary stores as an integral element of the military pay and benefits package for members of the uniformed services on active duty, members of the Reserve Components, retired members, and others authorized by law or regulation.

Department of Defense Education Activity

The Department of Defense Education Activity (DoDEA) plans, directs, coordinates, and manages the education programs for DoD dependents who would otherwise not have access to a high-quality public education.

Family Advocacy

The Family Advocacy Program (FAP) is the DoD social services program at every installation with command-sponsored families to address child abuse and domestic abuse in the military community, promoting public awareness and prevention, early identification, reporting, comprehensive and coordinated safety planning and support to victims, and treatment for all family members when appropriate, in collaboration with civilian agencies.

Family Policy/Children and Youth

The Office of Family Readiness Policy/Children and Youth provides oversight for child development programs; services and support for geographically dispersed service members and families in all states and territories; youth financial readiness services and tools that promote financial literacy and well-being; education programs that build skills for individual and family life development; and partnerships with federal and non-federal entities to augment support for service members and their families.

Military OneSource

Military OneSource provides service members and their families with access to a wide variety of resources and support in order to weather the demands of military life. In an increasingly technological and mobile world, MilitaryOneSource.mil offers support 24/7, telephonically as well as online.

Morale, Welfare and Recreation

Morale, Welfare, and Recreation (MWR) encompasses a wide array of community support and business operations, supporting authorized patrons worldwide. Participation in recreation, fitness, sports, cultural arts, and other leisure activities is the key to active living, which leads to improved personal health and well-being and helps build strong military families and healthy communities.

Resale Activities and Nonappropriated Fund Policy

The Resale Activities and Nonappropriated Fund Policy Office is responsible for the oversight and policy governing the commissary and exchange benefits, operations, and programs, which are among the most valued contributors to the quality of life of service members and their families.

Strategic Outreach

The Office of Military Community Outreach is responsible for developing and implementing outreach tactics supporting MC&FP, communicating critical program and policy information to service members and their families, leadership, and service providers through public affairs activities, online tools and resources, social media channels, and print products.

State Liaison and Educational Opportunities

Through engagement and education of state policymakers, nonprofit associations, concerned business interests, and other state leaders, the DoD State Liaison Office (DSLO) seeks to work with states to remove unnecessary barriers and significantly improve the quality of life for military families. In addition, through program and policy oversight, the Educational Opportunities office supports the voluntary education requirements of one of the largest continuing education programs in the world.


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