If you have chosen to take a break from your career, consider
volunteering your time and talent. Volunteering to a charitable
organization is a wonderful effort as well as a way to meet new
people and learn more about the community. Volunteer activities
add depth to résumés, but the experience needs to be documented so that the service equates to business expertise. Before
you again become fully employed, use any free time to enjoy
your new community. Refer to the Advice for Volunteers website
for guidance in selecting a volunteer position and Monster.com
for spouse assistance in the Helpful Websites sidebar.
SUCCESSFULLY RELOCATING YOUR
The majority of relocating families have dependent children. If
you are moving with children, you probably researched schools
before moving; however, personal school visits will transform the
unknown into reality. Visits to new schools to survey the classrooms and meet teachers will go a long way to allay your, and
your children’s worries about the new environment.
Listen carefully to each child’s concerns—every move can bring
new issues to the surface. Encourage your children to maintain
contact with former friends, even while trying to make new
friends. Exchanging photos, having email access and possibly a
cell phone with a camera feature can help bridge the gap between
old and new friends during the early weeks in a new location.
DEALING WITH CHALLENGES
Keep in mind that every stage and every age can bring new challenges. Children who sailed through the last move could be in
an entirely different place emotionally and physically for this
move, so parents cannot assume that a child will ease into the
current move. Routinely share accomplishments and challenges
with each other and talk about ways to overcome difficulties.
Children need to know that even
though the parents are responsible
for uprooting them, you both have
challenges to face, and you need to
work together as a family to solve
The following signs may indicate
that children are struggling with the
adjustment: sudden reading difficulties, changes in attention span
or study habits, weight loss or gain,
altered enthusiasm or energy levels,
strained relationships with you or
their siblings, or disturbed sleep
patterns. Stay closely involved with
• Write down three or four goals to achieve
in your new city.
• Continue all your special family
celebrations and traditions.
• Share some of your family’s special
recipes and cultural aspects with new
acquaintances and neighbors.
• Keep a log of new experiences
• Give everyone in the family
manageable moving chores (taking
care of practical matters will take
the edge off homesickness).
• Join an athletic or special interest group.
• Get involved in community and/or
religious organizations, especially
those that sponsor activities, volunteer
efforts and programs for newcomers.
• Learn about the local government,
issues and politics.
• Most importantly, be patient and take
one day at a time.
American Medical Association www.ama-assn.org
American School Directory www.asd.com
National Association of Child Care Resource www.naccrra.org and Referral Agencies
Elder Care Locator www.eldercare.gov
American Animal Hospital Association www.healthypet.com Hospital Locator
Advice for Volunteers www.serviceleader.org
Parents Without Partners, Inc. www.parentswithoutpartners.org