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MMP #980: Jerad Knight -“Manpendents”

In today’s episode, Lindsey Rauch will be interviewing Jerad Knight about his advocacy for male dependents and the mission of Ohana Homefront Foundation.

Jerad Knight is a U.S. Army Veteran, military spouse and mental health advocate.  After retirement from the Army, Jerad transitioned into life as one of the often unseen male military spouses. In his role as a manpendent, he advocates for the challenges that male military dependents often face within established family support groups and what these groups can do to end the stigma that often surrounds them.  He is the active Advocacy Director for Ohana Homefront Foundation and represents male spouses and our military community as the 2023 AFI Buckley Space Force Base Spouse of the Year

Resource Recon with Sarah and Jolene

This week’s Resource Recon is all about our Embrace Your Base series.

As PCS season unfolds across the military like a summer wave at the beach, many military spouses and families find themselves relocating to a new home. Whether this is your first PCS or your tenth, it is a daunting process to reestablish your life somewhere new.

Enter: Mission: Milspouse’s Embrace Your Base, a blog series covering nearly 50 different military locations. Our Mission: Milspouse Command Team and Band of Bloggers have compiled insider details regarding local realtors, off-post health care options, specific installation information, spouse testimonials, social media connections, hidden gems of the area, and some bucket list things you have to do before you leave.

You can find this series and more on our website

Empowerment Patrol Report with Amanda

Do you know a milspouse, service member, family member, community member or nonprofit organization who goes above and beyond to empower the military lives of others? Nominate a stand-out empowerment champion for Mission: Milspouse’s “Everyday Empowerment” award! This could be a relative, spouse, nonprofit, or a battle buddy you’ve met along the way.

“Everyday Empowerment” winners will receive a digital certificate, a token of our appreciation IRL (that’s in real life), on-air recognition via our podcast, and be included in a social media reel each month with their fellow winners. Nonprofits that are selected will receive a $100 donation from Mission: Milspouse to support their continued work within the military community.

To nominate someone or a nonprofit, simply head to our website at missionmilspouse.org. Select the Get Involved tab, where you’ll then click Empowerment from the dropdown menu and you’ll find the Nomination Form!

We would love to give praise and recognition to spouses and organizations who are helping you throughout your milspouse journey.

Moxie Minute with Amie

This week, let’s talk about empathy!

Brene Brown has shared some research on empathy, where it’s been discovered that having high levels of empathy leads to leadership, academic, and professional success as well as success rates in marriage and effective organizations. She states, “The bottom line is that empathy is essential for building meaningful, trusting relationships, which is something we all want and need.”

Empathy is a powerful skill that can be learned and practiced. A scholar from England, Teresa Wiseman shares that there are four defining attributes of empathy. They are (1) to be able to see the world as others see it (2) to be nonjudgmental (3) to understand another person’s feelings, and (4) to communicate your understanding of that person’s feelings.

Something I want to add that is important for us to remember is that we need to practice self-empathy too. If you are experiencing any feelings of doubt, shame, guilt, unworthiness, or any negative emotions about yourself, be the friend you need in that moment. How might you respond if a friend was in that situation? Would you help uplift and empower them? If so, try to remember the same should be said about you. Empathy is a strength that opens your heart and leads to compassion.

News 6 with Emma

Here is this week’s News 6 mashup of stories for the week of April 17, 2023, straight from M:M News 6 Correspondent, Emma Tighe:

Brandon Act signed to Help Combat Mental Health Stigma in the Military 

Two weeks ago the Brandon Act was signed by the undersecretary of defense for personnel and readiness, Gilbert R. Cisneros Jr.

It’s goal is to improve the referral process for active duty members when it comes to mental health. It also seeks to make it easier to seek a mental health evaluation confidentially.

The Brandon Act is named after Navy Petty Officer 3rd Class Brandon Caserta who died by suicide in 2018

“Our greatest strength is our people, and we are committed to their well-being,” Cisneros said. “Therefore, I firmly believe that seeking mental health treatment is a sign of strength and resilience. This policy, spurred by the passage of the Brandon Act, is an important step in ensuring that our service members are able to seek mental health treatment when and how they need it. We honor Petty Officer Brandon Caserta’s memory by ensuring that our military services have procedures and processes in place that allow service members to seek help confidentially, for any reason, at any time and in any environment, and aim to reduce the stigma associated with seeking mental health care.”

This policy allows service members to seek a mental health evaluation at any point, time, or reason, while keeping the evaluation confidential and unable to impact the service member’s career.

This policy will roll out in two phases.The first phase must happen within 45 days and requires all services to provide a plan to implement this policy for all active duty service members. The second phase will be the act of implementing this policy for all non active duty service members.

If you are a veteran and struggling with a mental health crisis, please contact 988 Veterans Crisis Line, Military OneSource nonmedical counseling, and the 24/7 Psychological Health Resource Center. To our service members, you would go to the doctor if your foot was broken or your wrist was sprained. Mental health issues are not your fault and should be treated like any other injury. You are too valuable to our military, to your family, and to the world to lose.

Find out more at defense.gov

Army Corps of Engineers is Pumping the Breaks for Sea Turtles

In Savannah, GA, the corps of engineers has agreed to do a study on the impact of local sea turtles before dredging the sea channel during spring and summer.  Georgia conservation group One Hundred Miles moved to sue the Corps over the impact the dredging would have on local wildlife but agreed to pull back when the corps offered to do a study on their impact.

“The Corps has now committed to what we’ve asked for, to go back and review the science,” Catherine Ridley, a One Hundred Miles vice president, said Monday. “The science is clear: Spring and summer dredging puts Georgia’s sea turtles and decades of conservation progress at risk.”

The Army Corps said in a statement Monday that it is undertaking the fuller environmental study to “ensure robust public, agency, and stakeholder engagement” as well as “full evaluation of the impacts that this action may have to the human and natural environment.”

It is the Corps job to keep the sea channels clear of debris and sediment so that all ships may pass safely.  Since the 1990s it has been law to dredge only from December to March when the sea turtles are not nesting and would likely not be found in the shallow channels.  This was lifted in 2020 when the sea turtles were taken off the endangered list.

The Army’s argument for moving dredging to spring and summer is that the reactions do not take into account other marine wildlife such as whales who are more likely to be injured in the winter months. It also makes finding contractors hard as they are on such a tight timeline.

A study in Brunswick, GA, showed no significant impact to sea turtles by dredging in the warmer months but the conservationists say that this test is not conclusive enough. No word on how long this new study will take.

I do love sea turtles and hope they come up with a compromise where everyone wins. What I have a hard time getting on board with, however, is paper straws. I said what I said.

Find out more at Federaltimes.com

Lawmakers Investigate Spouse Business Federal Contract Rates

15 lawmakers are asking federal agencies to track how many military spouse businesses are federally contracted.

“This change would ensure that military spouse entrepreneurs are adequately represented and accounted for,” said Rep. Marilyn Strickland, D-Wash., in announcing a letter sent to the Office of Management and Budget May 10th

This concern is being brought up because while spouses are allowed to bid for federal contracts, there’s no tracking system to see how successful their bids are and if the percentage of contracted spouses is equitable to their peers.

Decencies and gaps cannot be addressed as there is no way to know where they are successful and where they are failing. It is the hope that this can address the employment gap of military spouses which has not budged from 20 percent. 

These lawmakers hope to accomplish this data collecting by adding military spouse as an option on the Federal Procurement Data System. This change would not give spouses contract priority, but agencies can see that they are military spouses and use this information in their hiring process.

This might seem like a small step, but every process worth doing starts with baby steps. 

Find out more at federaltimes.com

This Day in History 

On May 22, 1980, the arcade game sensation Pac-Man was released and Shibuya, Tokyo, held the world’s first lucky players of this highly addictive classic, first hitting the controls on this day 43 years ago. 

It was directed by Toru Iwatani with a nine man team, and the idea originally began with a think tank on finding a game that would appeal to women as well. Most games at the time were sports or war related and the game world was buzzing for an idea to get women onboard with the growing gaming scene.

The game was filled with bright colors to entice younger players as well. He got the idea of the Pac-Man character from looking at a pizza with one slice removed.

It was originally called Puck-Man because in Japanese the phrase Paku paku taberu means to gobble something up. It had to change to Pac Man over here in the States because they were worried that puck sounded too close to….. well…. a popular swear word that could make the game a target for vandalism. 

Pac-Man went off to be a huge success generating more than 14 billion in revenue to date.  All I know is that Pac Man makes me hungry, and I might go pack a way pizza myself!

You can check out more of this week’s top stories here.

Thank You

Thank you for tuning into this week’s episode. Please leave a five-star rating and review on Apple podcasts, then send us a screenshot of your review to hello@missionmilspouse.org or DM us on Facebook or Instagram @missionmilspouse to receive a special in-real-life gift as a thank you on behalf of MM. We appreciate your engagement and support.

With over 159 years of military spouse experience and 68 PCSes under their belts, the M:M Command team is the ultimate Battle Buddy to help navigate Milspouse life. Powered by volunteer spirit and optimism the M:M Command Team could run a small country, but instead are dedicated entirely to the global empowerment of military spouses to help them conquer adversity, foster confidence, and thrive in this military life.

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MMP Show #1033 Maggie The Military Rat

MMP Show #1033 Maggie The Military Rat

Join Mission: Milspouse Partner Relations Coordinator, KateLynn Heavilon as she interviews children’s book author Monica Voicu Denniston. Monica shares her experience of coming into her own as a military spouse, as well as the inspiration behind her book, “Maggie the Military Rat.

Monica Voicu Denniston is an active duty Air Force spouse and mom to three military brats. She is a first-generation Romanian immigrant who developed a passion for picture books while using them to learn English when she was eight years old. Monica has a law degree from UC Berkeley School of Law, where she currently teaches legal writing. She and her family have lived in Sacramento, California; Newport, Rhode Island; and Madrid, Spain. They call the Bay Area, California home. 

Connect with Monica: maggiethemilitaryrat.com, @maggiethemilitaryrat (Instagram); maggiethemilitaryrat (Facebook)

Join Deputy Director of Marketing, Lindsey Rauch, as she navigates the challenges of not only being a military spouse but a mom of two young children in a military family.

MMP #1031: Motherhood and Mental Health

MMP #1031: Motherhood and Mental Health

Listen along as Mission: Milspouse Executive Director talks with Erin Muhlenbeck about the realities of navigating mental health and motherhood as a military spouse.

Mission: Milspouse is a
501(c)3 nonprofit organization.

EIN Number: 88-1604492

Contact:

hello@missionmilspouse.org

P.O. Box 641341
El Paso, TX 79904

 

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