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Making Connections in the Military


Having strong social connections can smooth life’s rough edges and make the good times even better. As a single service member far from friends and family, you may feel cut off from your usual sources of support. Fortunately, there are plenty of opportunities to forge meaningful new connections in the military.

The importance of personal connections

A network of support can contribute to your overall well-being in a number of ways. Having friends and others to turn to:

  • Reduces stress by providing emotional and practical support.
  • Gives you a greater sense of belonging by being part of a community who value and care about you.
  • Brings peace of mind from knowing that you have people to turn to when you need help.
  • Increases self-confidence through opportunities to help people you care about when they’re in need.

Single service member programs

Each military branch offers a program for single service members. These programs are a great way to develop new friendships and strengthen existing ones. Single service member programs typically offer recreational activities, day trips and opportunities to contribute to the local community.

Resources for making connections in the military

The Defense Department and Military OneSource provide programs that can help you connect with others, no matter where in the world you are.

Image of Health and Wellness Coaching

MWR programs offer a variety of opportunities for single service members up to age 25, including trips and tours, concerts and special-event activities. You’ll also find fitness, sports and other activities through your installation’s MWR program.

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A military sponsor is a friendly face after a PCS move. Your sponsor will show you the ropes and help you settle into your new location.

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It can be good to talk with someone who’s walked in your shoes. Military OneSource’s peer-to-peer specialty consultations connect you with a master’s level consultant with firsthand life experience as a service member or military spouse. Peer-to-peer support is free and confidential.

Image of Confidential Non-medical Counseling

Military OneSource can connect you with information about activities, hobbies, groups or other social organizations in your area. These are a good way to meet people with common interests. Call 800-342-9647 or start a live chat to connect with a Military OneSource consultant.


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