The charity, which has this year been pivotal in marking the RAF’s centenary, is now looking ahead to the next 100 years with plans to support even more serving and former RAF personnel, including war veterans.
Members’ subscriptions, together with donations and legacies, help the charity to run a variety of projects for all ages. These include bedtime stories for children whose parents are away on duty, befriending visits for people experiencing loneliness, subsidised holidays for struggling families, and sheltered housing for pensioners.
While many of the Association’s existing members have some kind of RAF connection, some join simply to do their bit to support people who have made sacrifices for their country.
Group Captain Del Rowlands, the Association’s Director of Membership, said all members enjoyed keeping in touch with the charity’s news, and those who wanted a more active role were encouraged to apply for volunteering opportunities.
He said: “Many of our members volunteered at RAF 100 events throughout 2018, helping to make a huge difference to the profile and success of the centenary celebrations.”
Ordinary membership costs £20.50 per year for those who are serving or have served in the RAF, Reserves, Royal Observer Corps or one of the Commonwealth Air Forces. People who are over 18 and were in the Air Cadet Organisation can also join as Ordinary Members.
Members of the general public who haven’t served but still want to support the RAF family may join as Associate Members at a cost of £14.50 per year.
Del added: “Members can do as much or as little as they wish to further contribute to the Association’s work, and everyone who joins us receives a quarterly magazine, access to discounts and offers, and the sense of belonging to something really worthwhile.”
More information about becoming a member of the RAF Association can be obtained by telephoning the charity on 0800 018 2361 or by visiting its website: rafa.org.uk.
Notes to editors:
Contacts for media
Rachel Dalby or Emma Reed, PR Managers, RAF Association, Leicester – 0116 464 5066
About the Royal Air Forces Association
The Royal Air Forces Association (or RAF Association) is a membership organisation and registered charity that provides welfare support to the RAF family.
The Association recognises that RAF personnel and their immediate families dedicate their lives to their country, and we believe that such a sacrifice should not result in suffering, poverty or loneliness.
Whether it’s an injured airman or woman fighting to get back on their feet, a young child missing their parent away on overseas operations, or a World War II veteran needing a shoulder to lean on, we are here to help all generations of RAF personnel and their families. We also support serving families if they need us. We give practical, emotional and financial support.
Our membership of more than 72,000 includes serving RAF personnel, veterans and members of the public who want to show their support for the work that we do.
Across the UK in 2017 the Association carried out more than 115,000 welfare contacts, calls and visits, helped tell thousands of bedtime stories to children whose parents were away on operations, and gave tailored holidays to 2,500 RAF veterans, widows and family at our Wings Breaks hotels. Our support ranges from simply providing conversation and friendship to preparing and submitting application forms for financial assistance.
Charity numbers: 226686 (England and Wales), SCO37673 (Scotland).