Report IV The social and dialogical family support in the perspective of extended military families, including the soldier as family member, accomplishing military deployments: Extended family research about Swedish soldlers, veterans and their families in context of military deployment. Swedish Military Families

Ann-Margreth E. Olsson

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Abstract

During 2012–2017, Dialogue Participating Action Research (DPAR) was conducted to- gether with Swedish soldiers, veterans and their families. They narrated about how they, also at distance, managed to collaborate and by means of many dialogical conversations, managed the home front and to keep their relationships alive. Swedish soldiers have responsibility to inform and involve their families. The support of the soldier’s family is an important part to ensure the soldier to manage to combine to be a caring family member and a deployed soldier with focus on the commission. The Armed Forces organise the family support with local family support co-ordinators as a base; inviting to events such as family meetings; publishing family information and offering family support through agreements with idea-based organisations.The main object of idea-based organisations is the benefit of members. Here they are all run by and for soldiers, veterans and their families. The couples who participated in the education Preparation and Relationship Education/Enhancement Program (PREP) provided by the Swedish Soldiers' Home Association, recommend participation to others. The Invidzonen affiliate network offers flexible support to partners, children and parents of soldiers including support for soldiers in their role as relatives. Within the Family Zone, coaching support is developed for parents and children. The Swedish Veteran Federation (SVF) and the Swedish Military Comrades' Association (SMKR) mainly offer support to the soldier/veteran. The Swedish Armed Forces family support is characterized by an offer of support with a preventive and involving focus. The offer of support is recommended to be varied as needs and demands change over time within the deployment cycle and are different depending on whether you are a partner, child, parent or siblings of the soldier. Before the deployment, in phase of premission, introduction of early, the introduction of early family meetings is recommended to mobilize preparations also on the home front. The soldiers are recommended to invite to and organize personal family network meetings with information about the deployment and dialogues to reach agreements on communication and collaborative support strategies in context of the deployment. Further contact and mobilization of mutual support when needed. The family meetings arranged by the Swedish Armed Forces are recommended to be more dialogical. In addition to oneway information to the familymembers, the family members want and require meeting forms making it easier to ask questions and discuss current issues. They wish that the family meetings also offer opportunities to get to know the families of their own soldier's workmates, when this not previously has been arranged otherwise. In terms of content, it is important that the family meetings of the Swedish Armed Forces both inform about the military context AND about what you as a homestaying family member can expect before, during and after deployment including responses and reactions of your own, and how to act preventive, to manage and improve the emerging istuation

The Swedish military family support has a complementary and mobilizing orientation. The support needs to be varied and in tune with the development of the family life of the soldiers - the changes of the modern families. The engaged idea-based member organizations, organized by and for members, can be assumed to have every chance of succeeding to compliance in the development of their members' needs and interests. The combination that the Swedish Armed Forces offers family support both under its own management with local family support coordinators as key persons, and in collaboration with idea-based member organizations, run by soldiers, veterans and / or their families, means that the supply can be adapted to what is in required and needed in time. Crucial and a basic view, is to see the soldier and the veteran also as a family member and in mutual collaboration with family members of the soldier’s extended primary family. This collaboration is making it possible for the soldier to participate and carry out military deployments far from home and to have a home to return to.

Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationKristianstad
PublisherForskningsplattformen för Hälsa i Samverkan
Edition1
Publication statusPublished - 2019

Publication series

NameCollaborative and integrated approaches to health
No.Nr 1 2019
ISSN (Print)1652-9979
NameKristianstad University Press

Swedish Standard Keywords

  • Other Social Sciences (509)
  • Health Sciences (303)

Keywords

  • extendend primary family view
  • family network meetings
  • family work
  • idea-based organizations
  • leadership
  • local military family support coordinators
  • miliary family support
  • parents of soldier
  • partner of soldier
  • prep
  • sibling of soldier
  • social work
  • soldier as family member
  • veteran support
  • welfare society

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