Communicating with families
In January, Military Family Services launched CAFconnection – a user friendly website where families can access information on programs and services for health, education, employment and childcare. It contains links to Canadian Armed Forces service providers and Military Family Resource Centres, and information on what’s new nationally and in your community. Having these resources in one place will make it is easier for you to get the information and support you need, and feel engaged with the Canadian military family community.
Through CAFconnection you can access #MyVoice, an initiative that reflects our recommendation. MyVoice allows you to participate in the Military Family Panel Process, which provides access to stakeholders who work within, or in support of the Department of National Defence and Canadian Armed Forces. Your input and feedback will enable the Canadian Armed Forces to improve services, tailor programs, and advise senior leaders about the issues that matter to you. By sending an email, making a phone call, or participating in a virtual session, you can ask questions, raise concerns, offer opinions or suggestions and have your voice heard.
All input received through MyVoice and the Panel Process is referred to a subject matter expert, informs Department of National Defence-thinking with regard to families, and receives a response. You can have a look at the summary and status of families’ feedback so far by clicking on Status Updates. This new way of approaching communications with families puts a focus on what matters to you, not just what the Department of National Defence wants to say, and provides a source of information and referral for families that complements our office’s function.
By expanding into new forums and presenting more creative content, the Canadian Armed Forces are enhancing the way it engages families. The #MyVoice Facebook group and Military Family Services Pinterest page can help foster connections and a sense of inclusion, in Canada or abroad. As this sort of engagement grows, a greater and more accurate understanding of the military family experience can be gleaned, potentially resulting in more relevant and authentic communication and support from the Department of National Defence.
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This service is affected by the outbreak of coronavirus (COVID-19). Consult the Ombudsman’s message for more information.
In 2013, this office released a systemic review of the well-being of Canada's military families. One of our recommendations was for the Canadian Armed Forces to communicate more effectively with families, and we assess that Military Family Services has made progress toward implementing this recommendation.
See Recommendation 4: Communicate more effectively with families
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