Ohana Heroes
A Department of Defense-funded research project investigates the effects of military deployment on families, including how deployment creates changes in family roles and resiliency

SCHOFIELD BARRACKS, Hawaii (Jan. 10, 2013) -- A Department of Defense-funded research project is investigating the effects of military deployment on families.

The $2.7 million project is supported by funding from the Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Health Affairs, Defense Health Program, and is managed by the U.S. Army Medical Research and Materiel Command.

The purpose of the study is to determine how deployment creates changes in family roles and functioning. There are some resilient families that adapt easily to deployment while others struggle. The results of the study will examine the effects of deployment on children and their non-deployed parent and will provide data on what resources may be needed or developed to better support families.

There are four types of families (with at least one child between the age of 7 and 17) that are being invited to participate in the study:

•Military families with a deployed parent,
•Military families with no currently deployed parent,
•Civilian families with parents who are divorced or separated, and
•Civilian families with two parents in the home.

Participation includes interviews and hard copy surveys that examine parent and child strengths, each child's social and academic functioning and overall family functioning. In addition, noninvasive physical measures of stress (salivary cortisol and movement watches) will also be obtained over the course of one week for an estimated total of four to five hours.

Those who are chosen to participate in the study will be compensated with $100 cash.

The grant was awarded to the University of Central Florida, and the University of Hawaii at Hilo was sub awarded to implement it here in Hawaii.

"The ultimate goal of this project is to better understand the effects of military deployment on family functioning in order to develop and guide support programs for these families," noted Dr. Charmaine Higa-McMillan, an associate professor of psychology at UH Hilo and principal investigator for the Ohana Heroes Project at the UH Hilo site.

If you are interested in learning more about the study, send an email to contact@ohanaheroes.com or call (808) 365-4624.

Page last updated Wed January 15th, 2014 at 00:00