Military kids serve too – Celebrating Purple Up! for Military Kids Day 2021

Kit Carson students wearing purple seated in the Kit Carson gym
Kit Carson ISD celebrates Purple Up! for Military Kids.

April 16 is Purple Up! for Military Kids Day, part of the Month of the Military Child. “Purple Up! For Military Kids” is a day to wear purple to show support and thank military children for their strength and sacrifices.

Frequent moves, family separations through deployments, and reintegration following deployments can make school, home, and community-life challenging for military children. Yet, even in difficult circumstances, these youth continually demonstrate resilience and courage.

Why purple? Purple is the color that symbolizes all branches of the military, as it is a combination of Army green, Coast Guard blue, Air Force blue, Marine red, Navy blue, and Space Force dark blue and white.

Teens participating inRocky Mountain Adventure Camp for military kids summit a mountain
Rocky Mountain Adventure Camp for Military Teens

A worldwide celebration and day of awareness

According to Vanessa Tranel, Colorado State University Extension 4-H Military Liaison, 4-H clubs in New Hampshire developed the “Purple Up! for Military Kids” initiative in 2011 while working with the children of deployed National Guardsmen and reserve component members, and they saw Purple Up! as a way to build awareness in their communities.  Purple Up! is now celebrated around the world by military service branches, Department of Defense, governors, states, schools, businesses and communities.

CSU Extension’s rich history of supporting military youth

Colorado 4-H, a program of CSU Extension, has partnered with Army, Air Force, National Guard, and Reserve youth programs for over 25 years.  Thanks to the federal partnership among USDA-NIFA, Department of Defense and the nation’s Land Grant Universities, youth around the world belong to 4-H.  CSUE 4-H supports military youth and families at Buckley Air Force Base, Fort Carson (U.S. Army), Peterson Air Force Base, Schriever Air Force Base, and the United States Air Force Academy, as well as geographically dispersed youth living around the state who have a parent in the National Guard or Reserves.  As military families move frequently and experience the difficulties surrounding deployment and reintegration, 4-H provides predictable programming, a sense of inclusion and belonging, and a safe and nurturing environment for military-connected children and youth on installations to excel.

Purple Up! around the state

Extension and 4-H are helping lead the Purple Up! for Military Kids efforts around Colorado by having county commissioners sign special proclamations, producing purple STEM videos and posting them to the State 4-H website, wearing purple, asking schools to wear purple that day, hosting a FB live panel of military parents and kids, doing social media blasts and more.

4-H Club Officers wearing green 4-h aprons
4-H Club Officers in 2016.

Cheyenne County 4-H took on Purple Up! Day as part of their civic engagement mission. 4-H youth met with county commissioners to request they sign a proclamation declaring it Purple Up! for Military Kids Day in the county.  They also worked with Kit Carson School to support military kids around the state by taking a school photo of all the youth wearing purple.  The photo will be used to thank military youth, via a variety of social media posts.

Join the celebration on April 16th

Please join us in celebrating on Purple Up! Day.  Military kids serve too!

Post photos of you getting your purple on, notes of appreciation and support to military kids, etc. to Facebook, Twitter and Instagram and use #MoMC #kidsservetoo #PurpleUp!Colorado #motmc #TeamMilKids #PurpleUp2021 #MOMC2021 #YoungHeroes