For Children and Youth – Resources

As a service member, your military family has many resources available to help your family thrive and support your child’s education. This list of resources for children and youth can connect your family to opportunities that can prepare your kids for success – both in their education and beyond.

Department of Defense Educational Activity, or DoDEA

  • DoDEA is responsible for planning, directing, coordinating and managing pre-kindergarten through 12th grade educational programs on behalf of the Department of Defense, ensuring that all school-aged children of military families receive quality education.
  • About 75,000 military children are enrolled in 172 DoDEA schools around the world.
  • The DoDEA website is full of resources, such as their Parent Guides with information on what to expect in grade school and high school.
  • Military families living overseas may qualify for Sure Start, a DoDEA program specifically for command-sponsored families with preschoolers starting at 4 years old.

Installation youth programs

Eligible service members and family members may all take advantage of an installation’s youth program. Typical offerings include:

  • Computer labs, to allow for healthy, monitored exploration of technology
  • Social activities, such as supervised field trips to local attractions
  • Sports and fitness programs, such as soccer and basketball
  • General recreation areas, for youths to safely hang out and have fun
  • Volunteer and employment listings of that perfect after-school job or volunteer position
  • Instructional classes such as martial arts, gymnastics, music and dance
  • The military services also partner with the Boys & Girls Clubs of America, or BGCA, to help support children of military families. As part of the partnership, military youth programs have access to a variety of programs and activities including education and career programs, Mission Youth Outreach, money management and summer reading programs.

Military Kids Connect

Military Kids Connect offers engaging tools and games. It also helps children, pre-teens and teens prepare for the challenges around family transitions. The site also has resources parents and teachers may appreciate.

Teen Adventure Camps

Military Teen Adventure Camps are available across the United States, from Washington to New York. These camps can be great options for a teen interested in adding some excitement to their summer.

Operation Purple® Camp

Operation Purple Camp from the National Military Family Association brings together military kids from all services, and offers a Family Retreat that provides military families with a chance to reconnect and bond.

Morale, Welfare and Recreation Digital Library

Take advantage of the many databases and resources available as part of the Morale, Welfare and Recreation Digital Library. A free service for military members and their families, it has something to offer children at every age. Just log into your Military OneSource account or create a username and password to get started.

For children

  • Explora Primary: a database of colorful and fun resources that help children in grades K – 5 learn about animals, music, health, history, people and places, science, math and sports.
  • Explora Secondary: an online library of magazine and newspaper articles, videos, images and reference information about arts, music, geography, health, math and more for children grades 6 – 12.
  • for military children: online tutoring and homework help from expert tutors in more than 16 subjects.

Morale, Welfare and Recreation Summer Reading Program

  • Students who keep reading in the summer score higher on achievement tests than non-readers. Inspire literacy and lifelong learning by enrolling your kids in the Department of Defense-MWR Summer Reading Program. Contact the program at 877-565-1896.

Military OneSource Consultations

Military OneSource provides education consultations that can answer your questions and offer referrals to services that meet your needs. Consultants can assist you with a variety of questions about your child’s education concerning financial aid, scholarships, tutoring, college information and more. They can also provide:

  • Contact information for military-friendly schools and institutions
  • Referrals to in-home tutors and tutoring centers in your area
  • Public and private school information
  • College profiles based on desired degree and specific request

Military OneSource and the Military and Family Life Counseling Program also offer free non-medical counseling options for military children and youth. Whether your child needs support handling low self-esteem, behavioral problems or changes at home, trained counselors understand these challenges military children face, especially during transition periods like deployment and PCS moves.

To schedule a free and confidential session – whether it’s for an education consultation, non-medical counseling or other assistance your children may need – call Military OneSource at 800-342-9647 or click here for overseas calling options 24/7. Appointments are available seven days a week for your family’s convenience.

Installation Program Directory

Find programs and services at your local installation.