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Armed Forces Support Service gets £65,000 funding boost

A support service launched by a group of charities in 2010 which has helped more than 15,000 members of the Armed Forces community has today received a funding boost of £65,000 from ABF The Soldiers’ Charity.

The Armed Services Advice Project – or ‘ASAP’ for short – which is in large part funded by Poppyscotland, works in partnership with the Scottish Association of Citizens Advice Bureau.

Through trained advisers, it offers specialist guidance on a wide range of issues including benefits, debt, housing and employment. The service operates in 11 regions of the country – from Ayrshire to Aberdeen – and it is estimated that for every £1 of funding received, there is a client financial gain of £4.36.

Brigadier (Ret’d) Robin Bacon, Chief of Staff for ABF The Soldiers’ Charity, said:

“We are delighted to award Poppyscotland a substantial grant to help the charity continue providing vital services to veterans and their families in Scotland.

“The Armed Forces Advice Project has been running for the past ten years which shows in itself the positive impact it’s having on our Army family. Providing our veterans with advice and support to enhance their wellbeing and quality of life is invaluable and we are pleased to be able to assist Poppyscotland with carrying out its work.”

Gary Gray, the Head of Welfare Services at Poppyscotland, said:

“We know access to tailored information, advice and support is vitally important, and, since 2010, ASAP has made a massive difference to the lives of thousands of veterans and their families. This generous funding boost of £65,000 from ABF The Soldiers’ Charity will ensure this vital work will go on.”

Other organisations that also provide vital funding and support for the service are the Royal Air Force Benevolent Fund; Officers Association Scotland; Royal Navy & Royal Marines Charity; and SSAFA The Armed Forces Charity.

Citizens Advice Scotland Chief Executive Derek Mitchell said:

“The Scottish Citizens Advice network is there to offer advice and advocacy on behalf of everyone in Scotland, and we are proud that for a decade now we have run the specialist Armed Services Advice Project.

“This additional funding from ABF The Soldiers Charity is a very welcome contribution towards this vital service for veterans and other members of the armed services community. Members of the Forces and their families make tremendous sacrifices for their communities and their country. We’re proud to play our part in ensuring they get the advice and support they need.”

To get in touch with ASAP, please call the helpline on 0808 800 1007 from Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm. For more information, please visit the ASAP website at www.adviceasap.org.uk.

Poppyscotland provides life-changing support to the Armed Forces community. Money raised from the Scottish Poppy Appeal and the charity’s year-round fundraising enables them to deliver support to members of the Armed Forces community in Scotland by providing tailored funding and assistance. The charity also funds services in advice, employment, housing, mental health, mobility and respite. For more information, please visit www.poppyscotland.org.uk.

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