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7 The Military Family Readiness System: Present and Future
Pages 233-272

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From page 233...
... It also integrates emergent research on the well-being of military-connected families. The chapter provides a roadmap with actionable steps that could transform the current support infrastructure -- the Military Family Readiness System (MFRS)
From page 234...
... In short, the aim of the MFRS is to provide a support infrastructure that promotes family well-being and thereby fosters family readiness, which in turn enhances service members' readiness. The MFRS offers a high level of support to address the demands of military service and the reliance on volunteers to serve.
From page 235...
... Airman & Family Readiness aspx SOURCE: From Military OneSource, see https://www.militaryonesource.mil. quite extensive and diverse, depending on the size of the garrison, the extent to which it is feasible for families to accompany service members to their posting, and the interests of garrison leadership.
From page 236...
... . 7  DoD funds the Penn State Clearinghouse for Military Family Readiness [http://www.military families.psu.edu]
From page 237...
... The continuing post-9/11 conflict has required the MFRS to progressively adapt in order to meet the emerging needs of military families within an ever-changing political and budgetary landscape. Parallel with the rapid evolution of military family readiness programs, services, and resources is an expansion of research on the impact of military life on families and children, as well as research on approaches developed to enhance family well-being in the context of military life stressors.
From page 238...
... . While much remains to be accomplished to achieve a true complex adaptive support system for military family readiness, the infrastructure that has been put in place provides a sound foundation on which to build one.
From page 239...
... , the figure has been re-envisioned as a model for a tiered continuum of support within a complex adaptive system such as the MFRS. Moreover, this adapted model has an explicit focus on promotional activities that foster competency, capacity, and skill building with individuals and families.
From page 240...
... EVIDENCE-BASED AND EVIDENCE-INFORMED POLICIES, PROGRAMS, SERVICES, RESOURCES, AND PRACTICES As a complex adaptive system, the MFRS and its components (policies, programs, services, resources, and practices) are dynamic and evolving, because the needs, opportunities, and challenges facing military families are continuously changing.
From page 241...
... In addition, these interventions are focused on increasing protective factors that have been linked to resilience. Prevention Domain Program Types Potential Program Audience Program Examples Universal Targeted to the general military Military OneSource, MWR; Purple prevention population or a specific military Crying Campaign; Military Family services, population (e.g., single parents or Life Counselors; Family Support programs, children)
From page 242...
... . Maintenance Domain Program Types Potential Program Audience Program Examples Compliance Targeted to individuals or groups Ecological Momentary Interventions with long-term who have successfully completed (Schulte and Hser, 2015)
From page 243...
... . For this report, the committee examined publicly available evidence with a focus on building on previous knowledge, including decades of prior research on prevention science and child development, and the committee incorporated available theoretical models, observational studies, as well as experimental and quasi-experimental designs conducted with military families that allow for causal inference (Centre for Effective Services, 2011; Glasgow and Chambers, 2012; Gottfredson et al., 2015; Graczyk et al., 2003; Howse et al., 2013; Kvernbekk, 2017; Schwandt, 2014)
From page 244...
... . In addition, implementation of EBPs or evidence-informed practices should be supported by continuous quality improvement using ongoing data collection and monitoring, which are required as part of a complex adaptive system.
From page 245...
... Given the importance of adaptability to military family readiness, these issues are addressed briefly below and in detail in Chapter 8. 13  For more information, see https://militaryfamilies.psu.edu.
From page 246...
... For a program to qualify as Effective or Ineffective, the evaluation must be a randomized controlled trial (RCT) or a well-matched quasi-experimental design (i.e., the intervention group and the control group must be matched on demographic and pretest variables)
From page 247...
... is a family-centered preventive intervention designed to enhance resilience, which was initially adapted for military families with school-age and adolescent children from two established evidence-based preventive interventions. These interventions employed core components using a community-participatory framework and implemented at scale using a tiered public health approach (Beardslee, 2013; Beardslee et al., 2011; Lester et al., 2016; Saltzman et al., 2011, 2016)
From page 248...
... for Strong Bonds is a community-based program designed to help couples in the military strengthen their relationships and prevent or minimize marital concerns, including those that might be unique to military families. At site 1, where couples were at higher risk for relationship problems (e.g., younger, married for a shorter time, had a lower income, and had husbands with lower military rank and higher rates of deployment)
From page 249...
... Multiple evaluations by the program developers have been conducted of the high school and college versions of the Green Dot Program. Survey data from first-year students in a multiyear quasi-­ xperimental eval e uation of Green Dot on one college campus indicate that the intervention campus experienced lower rates of self-reported unwanted sexual victimization, sexual harassment, stalking, and psychological dating violence victimization and perpetration relative to two comparison campuses.
From page 250...
... . A useful measurement frame for assessing the quality of military family readiness services is Donabedian's (2005)
From page 251...
... The model is not intended to capture all of the complex pathways that characterize program development and measurement but to serve as a general guide for thinking about the complex process of identifying the best metrics for assessing military family readiness services.
From page 252...
... 252 FIGURE 7-3  Model for development and measurement of coordinated support policies, programs, services, resources, and practices. SOURCE: Adapted from IOM (2014, p.
From page 253...
... . Attaining a high-quality, complex adaptive MFRS depends upon the development of an integrated data infrastructure that supports population-level monitoring and mapping of family well-being, as well as effective program implementation and quality monitoring (see Figure 7-4)
From page 254...
... Such data analytics infrastructure and processes are foundational to fostering learning and adaptation across the MFRS. They would support a complex adaptive system with the data and information capabilities needed to develop greater insight into monitoring and addressing system-level interactions between programs and policies and the ways that may lead to improved outcomes and, ultimately, to increased readiness across the MFRS.
From page 255...
... It is a multilevel continuum that begins prior to or early in program development and continues through all phases of program implementation. As described in Chapter 4, DoD does not have good visibility regarding the variety of military families, so by utilizing engagement and participatory strategies it could develop a better understanding and better identify needs among diverse family constellations.
From page 256...
... Engagement approaches are especially needed in communities where National Guard and Reserve families live and in more rural areas of the country, as well as for those who cannot access installation-centered care. The DoD service system also would benefit from the sharing of resources, successful programming, and data across the service branches to better support military families.
From page 257...
... The majority of military families live in civilian communities (Whitestone and Thompson, 2016)
From page 258...
... . There have likewise been initiatives to improve professional training in civilian sectors, such as the STAR Behavioral Health Providers Program17 and PsychArmor.18 In addition to such cross-sector collaboration, in order for the MFRS to successfully develop, implement, and sustain programs, services, and resources promoting military family well-being, a deeper understanding of specific communities and their resources is necessary, along with culturally specific knowledge of the diverse subgroups of military families (see Box 7-2)
From page 259...
... Community engagement approaches also place an emphasis on the kind of outreach that is distinct from marketing -- ­ that is, going to where military families live, congregate, and interact on a daily basis (Huebner et al., 2009)
From page 260...
... In this regard, collaborative engagement approaches can help military leaders identify challenges and solutions that meet the needs of military families. Given communities' varying availability of resources and varying abilities to allocate existing resources, localized adaptation of the MFRS can foster both the capacity and the sustainability of programs and service provision.
From page 261...
... Collaborating with military families to clarify the well-being construct and variants across different military family subgroups and contexts may be valuable in selecting, developing or adapting evidence-based programs that can be tailored. The process of continuous quality improvement must include methods to incorporate evaluations of programs' relevance and validity for specific family types, constellations, and needs.
From page 262...
... Flake, U.S. Air Force, as quoted in Military Child Education Coalition [2016, p 16]
From page 263...
... CONCLUSION 7-2: The current Military Family Readiness System is siloed, with a diffusion in its division of labor and responsibility, and its delivery of services is fragmented in some instances. The system lacks a comprehensive, coordinated framework to support individual and pop ulation well-being, resilience, and readiness among military families.
From page 264...
... A continuous quality monitoring system that utilizes solid measure ments is needed to ensure a complex adaptive system that continues to progress in its effectiveness and relevance. The Military Family Readiness System can learn from community engagement and participation examples for potential incorporation of adaptation strategies and tailoring of promotion, prevention, and intervention efforts to ensure continuous alignment, relevance, and effectiveness of programs, services, resources, policies, and practice for stakeholders with a sensitivity to local contexts.
From page 265...
... American Journal of Preventive Medicine, 51(4)
From page 266...
... . After deployment, adaptive parenting tools: One-year outcomes of an evidence-based parenting program for military families.
From page 267...
... . Shadowed by war: Building community capacity to support military families.
From page 268...
... . Evaluation of a family-centered pre ventive intervention for military families: Parent and child longitudinal outcomes.
From page 269...
... . Application of Community Engaged and Community Based Participatory Research to Support Military Families.
From page 270...
... . Reducing barriers to evidence-based practice with military families: Clearinghouse for Military Family Readiness.
From page 271...
... . Department of Defense Military Family Readiness System: Supporting Military Family Well-Being.
From page 272...
... . Department of Defense Instruction: Military Family Readiness.


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