Current as of July 12, 2021
The coronavirus pandemic continues to be a challenge. Many parents are still working from home, children are on modified school schedules, and the continued disruptions and vigilance can be exhausting.
Military OneSource is committed to helping you find the resources you need to stay the course. Take advantage of the expanded hourly child care service. Add some new activities to your toolkit. Try some apps for self-care. And reach out for support if you need it. Military OneSource consultants are available 24/7/365 to help you and your family find the resources you need to meet the current challenges
Expanded hourly child care service
To support the growing needs of military families, the Department of Defense has expanded child care options. Through Military OneSource, military families now have free access to a national database of more than a million caregivers so they can find hourly, flexible and on-demand child care. The nationally recognized subscription service lets you:
- Search for potential caregivers based on your own needs and criteria
- Check references, review background checks and conduct interviews
- Choose, hire and pay providers on your terms
The service is easy to access and available online for your convenience. For more information, and to register, visit the Military OneSource Expanded Hourly Child Care Options web page.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention provide updated advice on a variety of current parenting topics including:
- Daily Activities and Going Out – includes advice for dining out at restaurants, playing sports, hosting and attending gatherings, and more
- Travel – offers information on air, train, bus and car travel, links to daily state case numbers and recommendations for destinations around the world
- COVID-19 Parental Resources Kit – provides specific tips for promoting social, emotional and mental health of children in age groups 0-5, 6-12, 13-17 and 18-24 years
For preschool age children:
- The National Head Start Association offers these ideas for learning at home.
- Sesame Street for Military Families has many resources including information on health and wellness and the importance of routines. Find videos, items to print, mobile apps, games and activities.
- THRIVE provides free online parenting support. It comes from the Department of Defense and the Clearinghouse for Military Family Readiness at Penn State. The new program helps with raising children 0-18. It features healthy recipes, stress-reducing activities, playtime guides and other online family support.
- ZERO TO THREE is about babies and toddlers. Try the At-Home Activity Guide. See “Explore Our Topics” on the homepage. Check out videos and articles. Learn about early learning, play, sleep, discipline and more.
For youth and teens:
- The MWR Digital Library offers activities and materials for all ages. Learn more about their free online resources.
- The Department of Defense Education Activity offers a comprehensive list of parent resources and online learning links.
- The Military Kids Connect website lets children connect to an online community of other military kids. It offers teen-led tours, a message board and more. Try this link they suggest for some fun NASA activities to do at home.
Military families know that life challenges can inspire us to be our best selves. This time at home lets us practice stress-management skills and try new tools. The following resources can help build resilience:
- These recommended wellness apps are free. You can use them on your mobile device, so they can go with you anywhere. Some are designed for service members and parents. Others are designed for children, like Parenting2Go and Sesame Street’s Breathe, Think, Do.
- The Boys & Girls Clubs of America offer these Tips for Building Resilient Youth and other parenting resources.
- If school disruptions are causing learning challenges for your children, learn how Military OneSource education consultants can help.
- The Department of Defense provides free, confidential, non-medical counseling to service members and their families. Licensed counselors are available 24/7. Learn more about counseling options or call 800-342-9647. Online chat and OCONUS calling options are also available.
Stay up to date on all the latest information on COVID-19. For updates and information specific to your location, visit your installation’s official website. You can also follow your installation’s Facebook, Twitter or Instagram platforms. For Department of Defense updates for the military community, visit Defense.gov, follow Military OneSource’s Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram platforms, and continue to check the Coronavirus Updates for Our Military Community page for updates.