Idaho National Guard supports families during pandemic and deployment preparations

Posted at 7:15 AM, Apr 17, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-17 10:55:30-04

BOISE, Idaho — It's the season of uncertainty, especially for military families.

COVID-19 may have the civilian community at a standstill, but for members of the Idaho National Guard, they're out in the field with facial coverings, practicing social distancing and letting business resume as usual. With a deployment scheduled sometime this spring, mothers and fathers are starting to prepare their families--especially their children--for more change.

Master Sergeant Heather Echols tells Idaho News 6 they're always really concerned with the spouses, but people don't realize how hard it is on children.

"This was already going to be a stressful time for a percentage of our wing. Now, it's a stressful time for everyone," said Echols.

The Idaho National Guard says they offer counseling services year-round to all members and their families. They encourage families to utilize this resource, especially children having a hard time processing the pandemic or concept of their parent's deployment.

Other services offered by the Guard include:

  • Numerous counseling services though the Director of Psychological Health
  • Spiritual health and confidential counseling through the Chaplain Corps
  • Beyond Yellow Ribbon counseling services
  • Military Family Life Consultants
  • Military One Source
  • Financial counseling and Services
  • Idaho Guard and Reserve Family Support Fund
  • Tricare

Stay tuned to Idaho News 6 over the coming weeks as we share how COVID-19 could impact Idaho's future deployment preparations.