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New £4m RBLI apartments, specifically designed for veterans, opened by Defence Secretary Sir Michael Fallon

New £4m RBLI apartments, specifically designed for veterans, opened by Defence Secretary Sir Michael Fallon

The Secretary of State for Defence, Sir Michael Fallon, has today opened Royal British Legion Industries’ new £4m apartments for injured veterans. The apartments, which were funded by the Government through The Libor Fund and four corporate donors, including the Morrisons Foundation, were officially opened at a grand event on Friday with over 250 attendees.

Situated on Hermitage Lane near Maidstone, the apartments have been built specifically for veterans who are wounded, injured, sick, or at risk of homelessness. The houses host 24 one and two-bed flats, all with special adaptations to make the lives of those with disabilities easier.

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Hampshire teams up with DMWS Training to deliver Covenant funded courses

Hampshire County Council and its partners have secured funding from the Armed Forced Covenant Fund to encourage support to the Armed Forces community and strengthen local government’s delivery of the Covenant. The Council decided to use part of the fund for staff training delivered by the Defence Medical Welfare Service (DMWS) to increase understanding and awareness of the Armed Forces.

The Armed Forces Covenant Fund funds projects that support military communities. With around 20,000 serving personnel and 60,000 veterans currently living in Hampshire, the county has one of the largest military communities in England. Due to this significant high number of residents with a military background, Hampshire County Council identified the benefit for further funding to train staff on different aspects of service life.

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Armed Forces Para Snowsport Team (AFPST) Spirit of Challenge

This year, the AFPST is privileged to be supported by Leonardo in our fundraising efforts, a company which is amongst the top ten global players in Aerospace, Defence and Security and one of the biggest suppliers of Defence equipment to the UK MoD. Our inspirational athletes conducted a tour of UK Leonardo sites in April and May, which enthused and motivated employees to start planning and carrying out their own fundraising activities for the AFPST ‘Spirit of Challenge’ campaign.

Highlights from the Edinburgh team have included a team of 12 ‘Leonardo Fitbitters’ who collectively completed over 1.5 million steps in just 5 days, raising over £2,000 in the process. 24 Apprentices based at the Edinburgh site climbed 1,345 metres to reach the summit of Britain’s highest mountain, Ben Nevis.

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Over 4,000 people set Longleat aglow for Alabaré

Last Saturday (9th September) an astonishing 4,000 participants gathered in the iconic grounds of the Longleat Estate to take part in Glow in the Park:Longleat, the 6km UV family fun run.

The wet weather did not dampen the spirits and the crowd and atmosphere were buzzing with excitement. Families, running groups, groups of friends, individuals were swept around the course to 80s and 90s tunes. Disco The grounds were awash with neon sweatbands, face paints, neon tutus and smiles.

The course wound its way round the spectacular estate finishing in front of Longleat House and featured seven fun zones, including The Fluorescent Paint Blast, Squelchy Foam Zone, and for brave hearted runners The Lion’s Den!

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New Forces in Mind Trust Award: King’s College London to explore Domestic Violence and Abuse among military spouses and partners

Forces in Mind Trust (FiMT) is delighted to award a grant of £153,272 to King’s College London (KCL), to conduct a study to explore the impact of life in the Armed Forces on relationships from the perspective of civilian spouses and partners, who have been victims of Domestic Violence and Abuse (DVA) by their military counterparts.

The 18-month study aims to address the lack of evidence from the perspective of the spouse, and identify their attitudes to help-seeking and their perceptions of support available. This research is part of a larger study, seeking to establish prevalence and risk factors for DVA within the Armed Forces environment.

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Storybook Waves book club in a box

A new initiative by the Aggie Weston’s Storybook Waves project has secured funding from the Annington Trust of over £40,000 for the next three years. Launching at the end of September 2017, the ‘Storybook Waves Book Club in a Box’ initiative seeks to relieve the anxiety of separation that families experience by connecting them through books and a nationwide network of Book Clubs.

Held in community houses at 21 base port areas, the Book Clubs will generally be hosted by Aggie Weston’s Pastoral Workers and will run monthly during term time. Aimed primarily at families of deployed personnel, The Book Clubs will seek to bring families together for fun-filled activity sessions based around the theme of a popular children’s book. While children play, parents can socialise and Pastoral Workers will be on hand to provide support and a listening ear to anyone struggling with the challenges that deployment can bring.

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RAF charity seeks fundraising volunteers to give its appeal wings

The Royal Air Forces Association is looking for volunteer fundraising team leaders and fundraisers to help fund its welfare work in specific areas in the UK.

“Forces personnel and their families sacrifice a normal family life to keep the rest of us safe,” says Katharine Montgomery, Volunteer Manager at the Association. “And we believe that we owe them a debt of gratitude once they have served. We are a welfare charity that focuses on providing practical and emotional help for service personnel and their partners and dependents. We are setting up brand new fundraising teams – looking for people who are passionate about raising money to fund our welfare support for the veterans and serving men and women in the Royal Air Force.”

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Summer of support for RAF families

From RAF Benson to RAF Wyton, the RAF Benevolent Fund has spent almost £50,000 in its second year of support for station families’ days.

The annual events are a much-loved date on the calendar when serving personnel are given the opportunity to share their working life with their loved ones. Families are able to relax and recuperate within their own community, without the pressure of operations, which is particularly important on stations where personnel are deployed short notice.

The RAF Benevolent Fund made grants to 34 stations, awarding a total of £47,000 to support the events.

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Tri-Service reading charity secures funding from Annington

Annington Ltd is to support the tri-service charity Reading Force with a sum of £75,000 over the next three years.

Reading Force supports the social, emotional and mental wellbeing of Forces families through the experience of shared reading by providing free books and reading scrapbooks to members of the Forces and their families. The scheme also includes Veterans, Reservists and Former Forces partners and children.

Families are encouraged to form reading groups to talk about the books they are sharing, and children are encouraged to keep a scrapbook to record their thoughts and feelings about the chosen title.

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SSAFA Surrey, Sussex, Hampshire & Kent to support local councils with Forces Connect South East project

Financed by the Ministry of Defence’s Armed Forces Covenant Fund, the project aims to increase understanding of the Armed Forces community within Local Authorities

In May, Surrey County Council, in partnership with Kent, East & West Sussex and Hampshire county councils was awarded £321,000 from the Armed Forces Covenant Fund to promote understanding and awareness within public authorities and related sectors, including health, of the issues which affect the Armed Forces Community. It also aims to strengthen local government delivery of the Covenant in the South East.

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