Red Sox Foundation and Massachusetts General Hospital Home Base Program
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Keeping Military Children Healthy

Learn more and watch this film »www.StayingStrong.org/educators offers educators an on-line training film and companion toolkits which can be downloaded below. All of these resources consider how individual classrooms and school communities can respond to the particular needs of military students and families without the need for additional costs or programs.

The film, titled Staying Strong: How Schools Build Resilience in Military Families, introduces two military families and demonstrates how their school community strives to support the resilience of students during and after a parent’s deployment and eventual return.

Grant support for Staying Strong provided by Bristol-Myers Squibb Foundation.

Download toolkits developed by the Home Base Program:

  • Educator Toolkit to Increase Awareness & Support to Military Children in Schools
  • School Nurse Tool Kit to Increase Awareness and Support for Military–Connected Children
  • Toolkit for the Well-Child Screening of Military Children
Educator Toolkit to Increase Awareness & Support to Military Children in Schools

Toolkit for Educators

This Toolkit is intended as a resource to support resiliency in children and their parents. Educators are invaluable to this mission, readily available to students, their parents, and the team of professionals that support them. Educators see children in a setting that is second only to that of their family in being aware of their daily functioning. The Toolkit is intended to assist in early identification of military children and parents who can benefit from a warm, familiar adult taking the time to address the stress of a parent’s deployment and reunion. Educators can also, when indicated and in collaboration with others on the student’s team, facilitate an appropriate mental health referral for a student or a student’s family. As part of the Educators Toolkit, Home Base has developed a guide for Classroom Activities to Support Student Resilience.

School Nurse Care Toolkit To Increase Awareness & Support to Military Children

Toolkit for School Nurses

Some 2,000 school nurses throughout Massachusetts have received our new School Nurse Tool Kit to Increase Awareness and Support for Military–Connected Children through the Massachusetts Department of Public Health (MA DPH). The toolkit is designed to help school nurses, educators and other school professionals better address the emotional needs of military–connected children and families in school systems. The Tool Kit was developed by the Home Base Program in collaboration with the Massachusetts Child Psychiatry Access Project (McPAP).

The toolkit includes:

  • A primer on military terminology
  • Suggestions for starting a conversation with a military–connected child about their parent’s deployment
  • Class room behavior check lists
  • Parenting tips about coping with deployment and home coming challenges.

The toolkit and a special school poster were developed by Home Base Family Team’s Bonnie Ohye, PhD. Dr. Ohye and one of our Home Base families spoke to Patch.com about the challenges military families experience during deployment.

In November, 2011 Home Base clinicians, Paula Rauch, MD, and Kathy Clair-Hayes, LICSW, provided training to school nurses, school superintendents and school committee members, and early child hood educators in collaboration with the MA DPH, and the Massachusetts Deptartment of Education. The school nurse conference featured remarks by Jacque Francona, a military mother, Home Base advocate—and nurse. Her talk to school nurses was covered by WBUR.

A Toolkit for the Well-Child Screening of Military Children

Toolkit for Healthcare Providers

The Toolkit for the Well-Child Screening of Military Children and an accompanying waiting room poster are designed to help pediatricians and other primary care providers identify and address the signs of deployment-related stress among children and families. Development of the toolkit was led by the Home Base Program’s Paula Rauch, MD, and Bonnie Ohye,PhD, and was generously funded by the William P. Anderson Foundation.

The Tool Kit was developed by the Home Base Program in collaboration with the Massachusetts Child Psychiatry Access Project (McPAP). Home Base and McPAP have distributed the toolkit to more than 400 primary care practices which provide care for 1.5 million children in Massachusetts. The toolkit has received state and nationwide attention through the Military Child Education Coalition, and a wide range of government and non–profit child–serving organizations, as well as The Boston Globe.