This Week in MC&FP
October 8, 2010
Monday, October 11th we’ll celebrate Columbus Day, a day set aside to
commemorate the October 12, 1492, landfall of Christopher Columbus in the New World – a place we
now call home. Other countries across the Americas join us in celebrating the day. And if you live in
Hawaii, you are also celebrating “Discover’s Day,” in honor of all discoverers, including the Pacific and
Polynesian navigators. And while we look back at an important event that took place more than five
centuries ago, let’s take a moment to remember our servicemen and women, far from home and family,
who keep us safe.
Have a good week and take care.
Your MC&FP Team
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From the DUSD
Yesterday, we said farewell to an MC&FP champion and leader, Ms. Vee Penrod. She accepted the
position of acting deputy under secretary for Military Community and Family Policy at a time of great
transition and provided stellar leadership and mission focus when it was needed the most. She stayed on
as acting principal director to provide stability and support upon my arrival. This week on Wednesday,
Oct. 6th, she began her new assignment as deputy under secretary for Military Personnel Policy. In the
short period of time that she served in leadership here, her leadership style, focus and energy helped us
meet our mission of taking care of our military community. We will miss her sense of purpose as much
as we’ll miss her sense of humor. We’re fortunate that she won’t be far away from us and look forward
to continued collaboration in the days to come. Thank you and good luck!
DoDEA Schools Celebrate National Disability Employment Awareness Month
This effort to educate the American public about issues related to disability and employment
actually began in 1945, when Congress enacted a law declaring the first week in October each
year "National Employ the Physically Handicapped Week." In 1962, the word "physically" was
removed to acknowledge the employment needs and contributions of individuals with all types
of disabilities. In 1988, Congress expanded the week to a month and changed the name to
Providing policy, tools, and resources to further enhance the quality of life of service members and their families.
This Week in MC&FP October 8, 2010
"National Disability Employment Awareness Month." For more information, visit
September „Safe Schools Newsletter‟ Ready for Reading
The current edition includes tips on back to school security, communicating with parents about
security, and helping children make ethical choices online. See
State Department Advisory Stark Reminder of Need for Vigilance
The recent advisory issued by the State Department for Americans living and traveling in Europe
is a stark reminder of the obligations to be vigilant about the ever-present danger of terrorism.
Each DoDEA school has emergency plans coordinated with local commands should an event
occur that puts our students, employees, or facilities at risk. The safety, security and well-being
of our children and our school communities around the world are our top priority. All employees
are cooperating with commanders around the world as they continually assess the security
environment. District Safety and Security Officers routinely coordinate with school, bus
transportation, and command officials to review anti-terrorism procedures and measures and
ensure principals, school employees, students and parents are aware of emergency plans and
what to do if a crisis occurs.
Wiesbaden High School Student Produces Suicide Prevention PSA
More than 30,000 Americans commit suicide each year. And there are 30 to 50 percent more
attempted suicides than actual deaths. A student from Wiesbaden High School in Germany
recently produced a Public Service Announcement on suicide titled, “Shoulder to Shoulder.” See
From the Office of Family Policy/Children and Youth
JC Penney Offers Military Families Reduced Prices in Portrait Studios
JC Penney portrait studios are offering two discounts for military families. The first, offered
through October 31st includes a free sitting, 50 percent off on all photos and two free 8 x 10
photos – one for the family and one that JC Penney will send directly to the servicemember in
theater. See http://www.jcpportraits.com/offers/portraitsoflove.html
The second discount, through June 30, 2011, provides for a free sitting, a free 8 x 10 photo, and
50 percent off the total portrait purchase (no minimum order). See
http://www.jcpportraits.com/offers/MilitaryOffer.html for more information.
“Forging the Partnership” Conference Planners Call for Proposals
Thinking about presenting at the DoD/USDA 2011 Family Resilience Conference? Proposals
for workshops, computer labs, research posters, and program showcase exhibits are due
Wednesday, November 3, 2010.
If you haven’t done so yet, mark your calendar now to be in Chicago on April 27 - 29, 2011, at
the Hyatt Regency.
This Week in MC&FP October 8, 2010
The interagency conference, Forging the Partnership, will bring together professionals from
DoD and USDA and will build connections, competency and the capacity of our agencies and
programs. The conference will feature keynote speakers, current youth and family research
presenters, interactive workshops and computer labs. For more information, see
From the Office of Morale, Welfare and Recreation
U.S. Armed Forces Men and Women Compete in Basketball Championships
The U.S. Armed Forces Men and Women’s Basketball teams competed in the CISM Military
World Basketball Championships held in Seoul, Korea, September 8-18, 2010. This was the
50th time the event has been held for the men and the first time for the women.
The U.S. men’s team placed sixth out of 13 teams with South Korea taking the Gold, Lithuania
the Silver, and Brazil the Bronze medal. The U.S. women’s team fared better and took home the
Bronze medal in the event with YN2 Syreeta Bromfield and 1LT Monica Mason being named to
the All Tournament team. The women’s Gold medal went to China and the Silver to
Kazakhstan. Congratulations to all the competitors!
• DECA is delivering the benefit at the following Guard and reserve locations. For more
information visit http://www.commissaries.com/guard_reserve_sales.cfm:
– Oct 8-9 Army National Guard Scottsbluff, Neb.
– Oct 8-9 Air National Guard Portland, Ore.
In the News
From the White House – Presidential Proclamations
Child Health Day
The health and well being of a child is one of our most challenging, yet important,
responsibilities, and we have an obligation to ensure that all our children can live, learn, and play
in safe and healthy environments. On Child Health Day, we reaffirm the critical importance of
the quality health care, nutritious foods, clean air and water, and safe communities our kids need
to grow into strong and active adults. See
National Disability Employment Awareness Month
As Americans, we understand employment and economic security are critical to fulfilling our
hopes and aspirations. We also know we are stronger when our country and economy can
benefit from the skills and talents of all our citizens. No individual in our Nation should face
unnecessary barriers to success, and no American with a disability should be limited in his or her
This Week in MC&FP October 8, 2010
desire to work. During National Disability Employment Awareness Month, we renew our focus
on improving employment opportunities and career pathways that lead to good jobs and sound
economic futures for people with disabilities. See http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-
From the American Forces Press Service – Domestic Violence Awareness Month
The Defense Department is observing National Domestic Violence Awareness Month by
reminding the military community about resources and programs to help in preventing or
stopping domestic violence. President Barack Obama issued a National Domestic Violence
Awareness Month proclamation Oct. 1, emphasizing the U.S. government’s commitment to
reducing its prevalence, supporting victims and bringing offenders to justice.
From the Family Matters Blog – Domestic Abuse: Don’t Suffer in Silence
“Several years ago, I interviewed a noncommissioned officer for the base paper where I was
stationed. He very bravely had agreed to talk about his experiences with domestic abuse in hopes
of raising awareness of the problem. He told me how his temper would flare up at his wife and
how he would get physically aggressive with her. His anger would rage out of control, he told
me, and it was difficult to suppress.”
From the American Forces Press Service – Efforts to End Domestic Abuse
Whether a withering comment or a fist raised in anger, the Defense Department is working to put
an end to all levels of domestic abuse within the military, a defense official said today. “We
want [our families] to be strong and healthy, and we’re committed to helping you in every way
we can to deal with the pressures and stresses of service, particularly those associated with
overseas contingencies,” David Lloyd, director of the DOD’s family advocacy program, said in
an interview with American Forces Press Service. See
From the Family Matters Blog – Readers Urged to Protect Identities
“In the fall of 2007, I was planning a trip to Disney World when I found out that I needed to be
in New York for business that same week. So I canceled my Disney World reservations and
made new reservations and went to New York. To keep my business expenses separate, I took a
rarely used credit card with me to New York. Because I didn't use that card very often, I didn't
think it was necessary to go online and check my charges. I just waited for the bill to come.
That was a mistake.” See http://www.defense.gov//News/NewsArticle.aspx?ID=61112
From the Fort Belvoir Eagle – Fort Belvoir community celebrates educational grant
DoDEA Acting Director, Marilee Fitzgerald, spoke at Fort Belvoir Elementary School's
"Operation Patriotic STEM" festivities on Saturday, October 2. The school received one of
the DoDEA Educational Partnership grants aimed at enhancing student learning opportunities,
student achievement, and educator professional development at military-connected public
schools. The grant will support Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics –
“STEM” – initiatives for the students. For more information, see
This Week in MC&FP October 8, 2010
Tips of the Week
Nutrition Tip of the Week – Are you getting enough Vitamin C in your diet?
Why do we ask? It's important for body growth, tissue repair, and wound healing. Good sources
include citrus fruits and juices, kiwi fruits, strawberries, guava, papaya and cantaloupe. For more
information on making healthy and nutritious food choices, check out the Commissary’s Web
site at http://www.commissaries.com/
Parenting Tip of the Week – Resources for Families with Special Needs
More than 100,000 military families have members with special needs. These include spouses,
children, or dependent parents who require special medical or educational services. These family
members have a diagnosed physical, intellectual or emotional condition. MilitaryHOMEFRONT
offers several valuable resources for military families with members with special needs,
including a Special Needs Parent Toolkit. For more information, visit the Exceptional Family
Member Program home page at
• Let‟s Move/Childhood Obesity Tip of the Week – Remove Calorie-rich temptations
Although everything can be enjoyed in moderation, reducing the calorie-rich temptations of
high-fat and high-sugar, or salty snacks can also help your children develop healthy eating
habits. Instead only allow your children to eat them sometimes, so that they truly will be treats!
Here are examples of easy-to-prepare, low-fat and low-sugar treats that are 100 calories or less:
A medium-size apple
A medium-size banana
1 cup blueberries
1 cup grapes
1 cup carrots, broccoli, or bell peppers with 2 tbsp. hummus
Financial Tip of the Week – Five Major Money Mistakes to Avoid
Examine your financial habits carefully, and then determine whether or not you are making any
of these five major money mistakes.
Spending too much. Spending too much isn't just about exceeding your income (although that is
a big part of it). Spending too much also encompasses getting things that you think you can
afford, but that you might not need. Focus on value, looking at what you can afford, and what
will deliver what you need for the lowest cost. Live within your means, avoiding debt when
possible, and keeping your debt to a minimum when you borrow.
Not taking advantage of compound interest. One of the keys to building wealth effectively is
taking advantage of compound interest. This means that you need to start saving early, whether
This Week in MC&FP October 8, 2010
it's for an emergency fund or for retirement. Build a habit of saving -- and investing -- early, and
you will have more time for compound interest to work for you, helping you toward a more
financially secure future.
Inadequate protection for your assets. Assess your needs (you may need a financial professional
to help), and make sure your assets are adequately protected. That way, you experience less
financial devastation in the event that something unexpected happens. Remember: insurance is
purchased to secure replacement of lost income should something happen to your money-earning
Neglect of estate planning issues. No one likes to think about the necessity of estate planning,
especially the part that involves the will. Without a will, power of attorney, health care proxy,
and other aspects of future planning, you are not in control of your finances.
Disunity in money issues in marriage. One of the most important things you can do for your
money is to be on the same page with your life partner. In order to be financially successful as a
family unit, you need to have common money goals to work for, and be on the same page with
money. Many couples have a “spender” and/or a “saver;” speak honestly to your spouse to
determine which one you may be and work together to meet your common goals.
Military OneSource Tip of the Week – Quick Tips for Single Servicemembers
Coming home after a deployment can feel great, but it's also a time of adjustment. These tips
Tell your friends and relatives how you'd like to celebrate your return. If you want to keep it
low-key, gently tell them that you're not ready for a large gathering yet.
Avoid a tight social schedule for the first few weeks. Instead of trying to see everyone right away,
give yourself time to relax and return to life at your own pace.
Establish your new living situation as soon as you feel ready. If you need to find new housing
after deployment, doing it soon can help you feel more settled.
Expect to feel out of sorts for a while. Loneliness, fatigue, anger, and sadness are normal parts of
Talk about how you're feeling and encourage friends and family to do the same. People may
wonder what you've gone through, but may hesitate to ask you.
Be patient with yourself and with others. Remember that those who are close to you are also
adjusting to having you home.
Limit your use of alcohol. Overuse of alcohol can increase feelings of depression and loneliness.
Watch your spending. It's tempting to celebrate your return with a shopping spree, but it's
important to stay within your means.
This Week in MC&FP October 8, 2010
Know when to seek help. If you're feeling signs of stress, physical or emotional, it's important to
seek expert help – the earlier the better.
Your Family Support Center can give you information and support on many issues that affect
service members and their families. And Military OneSource, a free 24/7 service from DoD,
available to all active-duty, Guard, and Reserve members and their families, provides
information and referrals plus face-to-face counseling. Call (800) 342-9647 or access
Spouse Tip – Six Lifelong Transferable Competencies
In his “Six Universal Competencies for Career Success,” Frank Leibold, Ph.D., of the National
Career Development Association, says that to succeed today one must:
Satisfy the changing customer's or client's needs. Your customer may be either external or
internal and your output either a product or service. Most times customer satisfaction will require
a process of innovation through team-oriented collaboration.
Become a creative, effective and efficient problem solver using critical thinking skills to meet the
customer's need in a response time that provides a sustainable competitive advantage through
added comparative value and service.
Have a global perspective with cultural understanding and sensitivity. It’s essential In order to
perform effectively in an increasingly multicultural society.
Be motivated and persistent for the right reasons; realizing that you can increase your motivation
substantially to face unforeseen future challenges. The root of all effective motivation is a
healthy amount of self-esteem.
Manage and take responsibility for one’s own career, including multiple and varied job
assignments with an international perspective, to help develop the needed competencies. A
formal career plan, along with feedback from candid and trusted friends for realism, and a
mentor to assist you in navigating career moves is also critical.
Live a balanced and healthy life with time devoted to family and outside work activities, a skill
that is now recognized as essential to life and career success.