The other day I asked my fellow military spouse bloggers some questions about deployment and where to go for help. Based on some of your comments as well as my own need for support during my husband’s upcoming deployment, I wanted to find an organization that offered help to everyone affected by a deployment or military life in general.
I had the opportunity to sit down and talk with the new Membership Director of Blue Star Families, Tiffany Isaacson. Whether you are a military spouse, a girlfriend, a parent, a friend, or even a civilian who simply wants to support our troops, I hope you take a minute to join our conversation and take a look at what Blue Star Families has to offer.
Tiffany, tell me about Blue Star Families.
Blue Star Families is a non-profit organization that was created by military families for military families. It is a wonderful organization that supports all branches of the military service. Blue Star Families seeks to unite, support, educate and empower parents, children, spouses, significant others, and friends, absolutely anyone who shares in the life of a military service member.
Can you give me some examples of ways that Blue Star Families works to accomplish its mission of supporting military families?
Two examples that highlight the mission of Blue Star Families are Operation Appreciation and our Books on Bases program.
Blue Star’s Operation Appreciation program is a way for the entire community to come together to thank the families of our service members. Many times the general population forgets families who are left behind, and it is Blue Star’s mission to make sure that does not happen. It is a simple process. An Operation Appreciation event can be held anywhere, all you need is stationary and pens to get started. The community is then asked to write letters of support and gratitude to either parents of service members, children of service members, spouses of service members or Veterans (another group that is often forgotten). These letters of appreciation go a long way in providing strength to those who support the men and women who serve our country.
Our Books on Bases program is all about children and thanking the military child! Blue Star Families distributed 6,000 books in the Southeastern United States in 2009 and is working with 70 Blue Star Family chapters to develop more distribution dates throughout 2010. This is a tremendous way for military children to be recognized and thanked.
What are the benefits of becoming a Blue Star Family member?
Membership in Blue Star Families is free! We encourage everyone to become a member, whether they are a military spouse, child, parent, service member, significant other, or friend. Everyone is welcomed and encouraged to sign up. As a member you will be invited to attend events in your area, such as a Books on Bases event or an Operation Appreciation event. You will also have access to our newsletter that is full of helpful information to help empower you and your family. As a member you can also get involved in your local chapter to help out many different types of programs that support military families. Blue Star also makes available resources to help you in your daily life. We are always adding to our Resource Page on our website.
Being a member of Blue Star Families means becoming a voice for military family issues as well. On May 1, 2010, the new Military Lifestyle Study will be out. This survey is full of questions that pertain to the life of the military family. At the request of the Speaker of the House, our 2009 survey was presented to a military family roundtable, which was attended by members of the bi-partisan congressional Women’s Caucus as well as the White House Council on Women and Girls. If you would like to find out more about the survey or how you can participate in the 2010 survey, the information is included on our website.
Many of my readers are military spouses. How can they find out more about Blue Star Families?
Blue Star Families is on the web at http://www.bluestarfam.org/, or you can find us on Facebook under Blue Star Families. If you are interested in becoming a member, you can sign up on the website or contact me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you for your interest in Blue Star Families and for sharing this information with your fellow bloggers! I hope that all of them will feel free to contact me with any questions they may have!