Find out about First Lady Michelle Obama's Joining Forces initiative and how you can help out this Veterans Day.
We recently sat down to chat with Disney Channel stars China Anne McClain, Doug Brochu and Chris Brochu to find out more about Joining Forces and their interview with First Lady Michelle Obama.
See what the stars had to say below and get a peek at their interview with the First Lady in the video playlist.
Tell us a little bit about Joining Forces and why the initiative is so important.
Doug Brochu: Joining Forces is a cause that wants to show support to all of the military families out there. 1% of Americans are in the military protecting the other 99% of us and I think we should make them feel loved, thank them and know that they are making a difference in our lives.
Chris Brochu: It's an initiative that encompasses anything from a thank you to actual hands on situations like cooking for military families. It basically helps military families in anyway that they might need help and shows them we are very thankful for what they do because behind every soldier there's a military family who needs support.
How do kids and families benefit from Joining Forces?
CB: For kids specifically, just knowing they are supported by others is really important. I suggest to kids out there who want to help that you take some time and get to know a kid who has a family member in the military. Invite them eat with you at lunch or hang with you on the playground...try to get to know them.
DB: Families and kids can benefit from Joining Forces by having that warm feeling of knowing there are people out there who appreciate them. Anyone can help military families feel special and supported whether it's by creating care packages or writing a letter, anything makes a world of difference.
China Anne McClain: Some kids have one or even both parents in the military and just being thankful for what they do is enough.
Do you have family in the military?
DB and CB: Yeah, our dad was in the Army for 25 years.
CAM: My uncle is currently serving in the Air Force and is stationed in Germany.
Why is Veterans Day on November 11 important to you? Do you have any special plans?
CB: In terms of special plans, our Disney Channel messages air that day so that's gonna be cool. But mostly Veterans Day for our family is just hanging out, having a bbq or something like that. The importance of Veterans Day is to take a step back and put in perspective what our military does. I think the 1% vs. 99% of Americans statistic that Doug mentioned earlier is a crazy number so just being thankful that those people are supporting us.
DB: Our veterans are sometimes left in the dark and it shouldn't be that way. They should be praised.
CAM: I like the fact that there is one whole day that we can say thank you and really appreciate our veterans.
What was it like meeting First Lady Michelle Obama?
CB: Extremely surreal. We were sitting there for like 30 minutes waiting and our palms were all sweaty.
DB: We were sitting facing the door that she was going to come through and everyone around us was standing so we weren't exactly sure what to do but once she walked through the door, she gave us each a hug and told us to sit down. She was very warm and joking.
CAM: I was a little embarrassed at first because I was the last person to stand up when she came in but she instantly made me feel comfortable.
How did the interview go?
DB: It started with silence (laughs).
CAM: Yeah, we were waiting for someone to say "action" since that's what we are used to but once we got started it was really cool.
CB: It was a pretty tight schedule but we each asked her a question and then at the end were able to go off book a little bit. It felt very fast.
What did you do after the interview?
CB: We got to go on a tour of the White House.
DB: The tour was really cool. Bo (the dog) came by for a visit.
CAM: It was really cool going on the tour. I actually learned a lot from the tour guide. He had lots of fun facts. I got to visit the china room which was fun.
DB: Every presidential family gets to design their own china so we got to see all of that in the china room.
What can kids do this Veterans Day to support our military?
DB: Sitting down with a veteran to hear their story and let them talk is an amazing thing to do. They have so much to share and it makes their day when someone sits down to listen to their experiences.
You can see more of the stars as they share their personal experiences with family members serving in the Armed Forces in short messages debuting on Disney Channel tomorrow in honor of Veterans Day.
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- 12 Things About China Anne McClain
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- 'Lemonade Mouth' Clips
- Joining Forces (White House)