The mood of the country remains riven with uncertainty, but here at ABF The Soldiers’ Charity we wish to reassure all our supporters and beneficiaries that we remain steadfast in our support to the Army family, with a raft of grant payments being made right across the whole community over the past month as you will see below.
We were founded in the tumultuous final years of World War Two and have weathered many storms – this one, too, shall pass.
Having made our head office in London ‘COVID-secure’, it has been great to meet in-person with colleagues and this has enabled us to get ahead of the game for what will probably be a long winter. Some more complex issues are much better dealt with face-to-face rather than via our laptops from home! We will keep the office accessible for our staff for as long as regulations allow, both for their wellbeing and to enable us to keep working at pace – and we remain now and for the long haul very much open for business.
Our Grants and Welfare office has been busy over the past month, with our total expenditure on individual grants now standing at £1.2m since April, providing a lifeline to over 1,500 people and families in need. Our recent grants include a specialist driving licence for a veteran with PTSD, bringing him one step closer to his goal of becoming a professional driver. We also funded a respite break for an elderly veteran who had been struggling to care for himself at home. He will now be safe and comfortable while he awaits a permanent bed at his local care home.
On the grants to other charities side, we recently awarded an £80,000 funding boost to Broughton House Veteran Care Village. The facility, the first of its kind in the UK, will offer a complete spectrum of residential and community-based support to Armed Forces veterans and their immediate families. It will include registered nursing and dementia care, independent living accommodation and a support hub offering advice for health, welfare, education and social needs. Our total expenditure on grants to partner charities stands at more than £1.8m since April, enabling 20 organisations to deliver essential programmes and services for the Army family. Find out more.
Podcast: General Talk with the Army Sergeant Major
This month, we spoke to Warrant Officer Class One Gavin Paton, the UK’s most senior soldier, for our General Talk podcast. The monthly series, hosted by Harry Bucknall, offers an insight into the ever-changing role of the Armed Forces in the modern world and the ways in which we, as the Army’s national charity, safeguard the welfare of soldiers, past and present, and their families. Listen now.
We are delighted to announce that our Christmas range has now launched. It includes an exciting new collaboration with designer Esther Johnson, who has created a range of bespoke items that celebrate our history as the Army’s national charity. 100% of the profits from each sale go directly towards helping soldiers, veterans and their families. Shop now.
Thank you for enabling us to fulfil our promise of being here for soldiers, for life.
Martin Rutledge CB OBE
Chief Executive, ABF The Soldiers’ Charity