eXtension Military Families Conducts Environmental Scan

There is a lot of excitement surrounding military families and eXtension these days. As part of our Military Families Partnership with the Office of the Deputy Undersecretary of Defense Military Community and Family Policy (MC & FP) and USDA/NIFA, we are conducting an environmental scan of CES programs serving military families. We are looking to identify all Extension programs that serve both active duty and Guard and Reserve military families for all service branches (Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps).

The targeted areas we are seeking information on include:
1) Strengthening families, child care, and youth development
2) Personal finance and financial literacy
3) Workforce development
4) Community capacity building

Additionally, we want to identify programming at all levels (multi-state, state-wide, regional, and local).

Analysis of the scan results will help produce information and tools critically needed to support military families and the programming that serves them system-wide (CES, DoD, USDA/NIFA). We will ultimately provide education, networking opportunities, and information ensuring the highest quality, evidence-based, and best practices programming available for our military families.

Plans are also being developed to launch an online space for helping professionals serving military families to gather, engage, exchange ideas, network, and build partnerships. Using the resources that eXtension has to offer as well as infusing social networking tools like Facebook and Twitter, among others, this new space should be dynamic, energetic, and bring together the best minds in the land grant system to support one of our most treasured resources – our military families.

There are a number of projects already underway that are associated with the overall Military Families Partnership and housed at land grant institutions. eXtension is working with these institutional project teams to educate and assist with their web needs. A series of Adobe Connect webinars has begun to help facilitate this process.

For more information on eXtension and the Military Families Partnership contact Kyle Kostelecky at kyle.kostelecky@gmail.com.