BSCkids recently interviewed Doug Brochu from the Disney Channel show, So Random! about the Joining Forces Initiative and his recent trip to the White House.
Doug who currently stars in the hit show, So Random! made a trip to the White House with fellow Disney star, China McClain from A.N.T. Farm, and his brother Chris Brochu from Lemonade Mouth. While there, they met with First Lady Michelle Obama to talk about honoring our Armed Forces and the Joining Forces Initiative. First Lady Michelle Obama and Dr. Jill Biden created Joining Forces to bring Americans together to recognize, honor and take action to support military families as they serve our country and throughout their lives. The initiative aims to educate, challenge, and spark action from all sectors of society to ensure military families have the support they have earned. The initiative focuses on key priority areas – employment, education, and wellness while raising awareness about the service, sacrifice, and needs of military families.
BSCkids: Doug Brochu
What can you tell us about the Joining Forces Initiative?
The Joining Forces Initiative about showing appreciation and support for those overseas and serving in the Armed Forces. I think its like 1% of people are enlisted in the military protecting the rest of 99% of people. I think we owe those serving gratitude for all they do. The initiative is just a great way to reach out in various ways and let those in the military that what they do doesn’t go unnoticed.
Do you have any family members serving in the armed forces?
Yes, I actually do. My dad was in the Army for 25 years.
What was it like growing up in a military family?
It was a lot of moving around and my dad was gone a lot. It affected me but it was also my version of childhood. I didn’t know any different while I was growing up. We lived around other military families so it was normal for us. Though sometimes my dad would be gone and I wouldn’t know where he was or why he was gone and that is hard sometimes especially for children.
Had you ever considered joining the military instead of becoming an actor?
I have actually. I have put some thought into it. I don’t know why though I haven’t done it. Even though my dad was in the military I guess I just realize that it’s not for me. Although if there was ever something terrible, like a catastrophe, just something really bad were to happen, I wouldn’t hesitate, I would definitely join if I felt the cause is a good one.
How did it feel to meet First Lady Michelle Obama?
Oh yes, it was pretty awesome and every variant of the word. I was there with my brother, Chris, and China McClain from A.N.T. Farm. And we were the only ones sitting for like 30 minutes. They were adjusting things and readjusting things and were just sitting and waiting. Then she came in and we all stood up. I was incredibly nervous up to that because like I said, we were just sitting there anticipating for 30 minutes. But she came in and was just pure grace. She had the air of warmth and hospitality. And Chris went in for a handshake and she just went in and gave him a hug. We joked around for a little while and she was just so dynamic.
What did you talk to her about?
We talked about the Joining Forces Initiative and how people can get involved. Since her time is so important and limited we could only ask her one question each.
Had you ever been to the White House before?
Actually it was my first time to Washington DC! It couldn’t have been a better first time in a city. The first day we were there me and my family just walked in a big circle around the city checking out all the monuments and basking in the city. Then we got an amazing tour of the White House. It was excellent. I mean they do tours all the time but its all velvet ropes and you can’t touch anything. But we got a great tour and tour guide and were able to roam around the rooms and look at things in all of the rooms.
How have you or the Disney Channel been aiding the Joining Forces Initiative?
Well the Disney Channel is definitely trying to raise awareness. Everyone can help in anyway they think of. I think people underestimate what they can do for the Armed Forces. Anything you can do to show how appreciative they are even if it is just writing a letter to someone over seas. It helps.
Is So Random going to do any Armed Forces skits to honor Veterans Day?
I’m not sure actually. I don’t think we did any thing that would relate but I wouldn’t be surprised if Disney Channel put a banner before or after episodes to spread awareness.
Disney Channel will debut a series of interstitial messages featuring First Lady Michelle Obama and popular young Disney stars China Anne McClain (“A.N.T. Farm”), Adam Irigoyen (“Shake It Up”), Doug Brochu (“So Random!”) and Chris Brochu (“Lemonade Mouth”) talking about their personal experiences with family members serving in the Armed Forces. The messages, debuting on Veteran’s Day, FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 11, are designed to recognize America’s military kids and are part of Disney’s ongoing support of the White House’s Joining Forces national initiative.