News

£80,000 grant to SSAFA, the Armed Forces charity by RAF Benevolent Fund to support members of the RAF Family

The Royal Air Force Benevolent Fund has awarded a grant of £80,000 in September 2017 toward SSAFA’s Casework service and other services that alleviate need, suffering and distress.

Casework sits at the heart of SSAFA’s work and provides personalised, holistic support to those currently serving, reserves, ex-service men and women, and their families. In recent years their Casework service has seen increasing numbers of working age beneficiaries requiring help. These beneficiaries have complex needs, including financial hardship, mental wellbeing issues, inadequate housing and lack of employment.

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SSAFA Southend Veterans’ Club welcome Mark Francois MP

Former Minister of State for the Armed Forces and current MP for Rayleigh and Wickford attended the weekly session

On Thursday 30th November, the Southend Veterans’ Club welcomed Mark Francois, Conservative MP for Rayleigh and Wickford.

The visit was part of Mark’s ongoing commitment and personal interest in the military community, which he is closely affiliated with.

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Navy veteran visits HMS Belfast after sailing on her more than 60 years ago

George Ward, a 90 year old helped by SSAFA, the Armed Forces charity enjoyed a day on the ship where he served

George ‘Sharky’ Ward, from Caversham in Berkshire, fulfilled his wish to return to the ship where he served in the Royal Navy. The ship played a big part in his time posted in Egypt in the 1950’s – and brings back many memories.

During his 14 years in the Royal Navy, George was posted in many locations including the Mediterranean and Africa. Serving at the rank of Petty Officer, he was a Naval Gunner.

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SSAFA

Left Right Left magazine Christmas Armed Forces appeal launched

Left Right Left, the new military memories supplement inside of resettlement magazine, Pathfinder International, has launched a festive campaign for relatives of loved ones away in the Armed Forces over the Christmas period, in which they can send in their messages of good will.

The campaign entitled “Jingle Comms – Festive messages for the Forces” will see Left Right Left ask for family members of serving troops to submit their messages of support for personnel away on operations or detachments over the festive period.

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Jonathan Sandall appointed as Director of Fundraising at SSAFA, the Armed Forces charity

SSAFA, the Armed Forces charity is delighted to announce that Jonathan Sandall has been appointed as its new Director of Fundraising. Jonathan will join SSAFA on Monday 20 November 2017.

Jonathan is the former Director of Fundraising at Peabody, an organisation addressing poverty, isolation and vulnerability in communities across London. He has also held senior fundraising and business development roles at Shelter and Make-A-Wish UK.

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SSAFA Health Visitor appointed to World Health Organisation role

Kerry Riley, SSAFA Health Visitor for Episkopi Cyprus and Kenya BATUK, has been delivering excellent health care support for SSAFA since March 2017. Her passion is seeing the difference that her work makes to the military community on a daily basis.

After seeing and applying for a new role being advertised, Cyprus-based Kerry has recently also been appointed as Public Health Technical Advisor for the World Health Organisation for a part-time role. This will entail promoting new guidance whilst also running alongside her current vital work with SSAFA.

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Openreach go above and beyond for SSAFA veteran in need

Since striking up their partnership in 2015, Britain’s digital network business Openreach have raised nearly £100k for SSAFA, the UK’s oldest Armed Forces charity.

Graham Barnard, Openreach employee goes beyond the call of duty:
Dougie is a 92 year old veteran living in Southend, who has always been very proud of his appearance and has a bountiful collection of shoes and clothes. He lives in a warden controlled studio flat, so space is a premium and, up until recently, he didn’t have any bedroom furniture to store his clothing in. The lack of storage meant that Dougie’s flat was very cluttered, which made his home a trip hazard for him.

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New Gurkha Services team up and running

The new team managing the Gurkha Services project at SSAFA is now in place. The initiative is funded by money from the Libor banking fines. Their aim is to work with all SSAFA local branches and divisions, where there is a Gurkha community, to share best practice and useful information and provide relevant training – ultimately to improve the provisions in place for Gurkhas and their families.

More information: According to the Gurkha Welfare Trust, there are an estimated 12,794 retired Gurkha’s settled in the UK with their families. Our experience shows that Gurkha veterans have complex needs, including many who are elderly and infirm with low literacy levels.

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Wednesday 6 December – Perth Christmas Concert

St John’s Kirk of Perth will be getting into the Christmas spirit by holding a concert on Wednesday 6 December to raise money for SSAFA, the Armed Forces charity.

More information: Performers will include the Kirk Choir and Organist, the Military Wives Choir from Leuchars base in Fife, an Ensemble of the Highland Band of The Royal Regiment of Scotland, well-known Olivier award winning actress Lesley Mackie, as well as local dignitaries, including Brigadier Mel Jameson CBE- the Lord Lieutenant of Perth and Kinross, and Branch President, the local Regiment -51st Highland, 7th Battalion, the Royal Regiment of Scotland, the Black Watch Association and many SSAFA volunteers.

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SSAFA

Saturday 11 November – Bishop Auckland Remembrance Service

A Remembrance Service will be held by the Durham Branch of SSAFA, the Armed Forces charity at St Andrews Church War Memorial in Bishop Auckland.

More information: The service will be conducted by the Reverend Dr Stephen Ridley, Chaplain to SSAFA Volunteers Durham and attended by the local Air Cadets who will carry the SSAFA Branch Standard on Saturday 11 November at 10.55am. After observing the two minutes silence, Ruth Wright of Bishop Auckland Pipes and Drums and volunteer for SSAFA Wear Valley and Teesdale will play a lament as wreaths are laid.

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