A grant of £ 24,917 from The Royal British Legion fund will enable Bulldogs Boxing & Community Activities Centre to boost its dedicated employment support team for veterans at its base in Fenbrook Close, Port Talbot. A service will now be available throughout the week to tackle the issues faced by veterans. The Bulldogs started as a traditional boxing club but over the years has evolved into a thriving Social Hub providing a wide range of support through their Five Pillar Programme. Any person associated with the Armed Forces has free access to the gym and get support from within the programme. There is a dedicated Veterans Drop-In every Friday morning, where veterans meet other veterans, within a multi-agency partnership led by SSAFA-the Armed Forces charity.
The grant from The Royal British Legion will build up the dedicated SSAFA / Bulldogs Drop In and fund activities supporting personal development, education, and healthy lifestyles. Boxing and fitness activities already provide opportunities to release energy and maintain fitness levels. Additional facilities for veterans will be provided and a SSAFA Caseworker will be available to work alongside the Legion funded employment support worker.
Mal Emerson, Centre Director, explains: “The Legion grant will enhance the support provided by SSAFA and the other partners at The Bulldogs for the Armed Forces. The work will address the issues of isolation and apathy amongst our veterans in the Neath Port Talbot community and tackle the health issues that people can experience when they leave the armed forces.
“The grant will allow us to enhance the work we do with veterans within the SSAFA Drop-In and provide a valuable opportunity for people to make positive changes in 2017 and for the years to come.”
The funding was provided through the Legion’s External Grants programme which, each year, gives £4 million to organisations which share its aim of safeguarding the welfare of the Armed Forces community.
Ant Metcalfe, Area Manager for Wales for The Royal British Legion, said: “We look forward to working with Bulldogs to help tackle the issues faced by our veterans and assist them to find social opportunities and work placements in their area and help build up confidence so they can improve their quality of life within the community. Bulldogs are set to make a real difference to the lives of ex-Servicemen and women in the Port Talbot area who are transitioning into civilian life.”
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