Memorial Day – Milspouse
May 22, 2015
By Amy Kennedy
Memorial Day weekend is a nationally cherished time – it’s an opportunity to take time to reflect on the people who have given to and sacrificed for our country through their military service, and what we can give back. Today we turn to our own Katie Mehr, whose experience as a military spouse has given her a keen insight into military communities has given us a new lens to how human powered places can contribute.
In her new piece on PRSA’s ComPRehension blog, Katie explains that “milspouses are affected by decisions that affect entire micro communities in the military and thrive on making their new environment a better place to work, live, and play.”
There are so many elements that define the military lifestyle and human powered places has a role to play in supporting service men and women. Their lives involve a lot of flexibility, including frequent moves to new communities (sometimes with short notice).
A community isn’t always going to be limited by geography – it can exist in multiple places all over the country. In the case of the military, having recognizable, distinct elements designed to serve the people that use them to build their lives is exactly what human powered places is about. Not to mention, it’s a practice that can be used for to address real concerns within a community.
For example, Katie points out that milspouses often have to develop portable careers and that can lead to challenges in certain fields. Even then, there seems to be hesitancy from some companies when it comes to investing in an eager, yet underemployed population. Imagine the opportunities if a typical military community feature was a flexible, co-working space (like the kind that have been popular with start-ups and freelancers), giving military spouses access to a full suite of office resources to allow them to continue their jobs. Companies could also benefit from milspouses networking with each other and other remote workers in these spaces and bringing that value back to their employers.
Ultimately, the beauty of human powered places is that with input from the military spouses themselves, there are probably many other solutions that could fully appreciate and employ their skills.
To learn more about Amy and her work at PRR, contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org or 202.684.9258.