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New updates - July 2024

Unforgotten Forces News

Welcome to the July 2024 edition of Unforgotten Forces news for groups and services supporting older veterans and their families.

Veterans' Services Update

Scotland’s veterans – where, how many, and what ages

Results from Scotland’s Census 2022 relating to ex-UK Armed Forces personnel has been released. The Census, the first to collect this information, found that there are 176,100 people had previously served in the UK Armed Forces, 3.9% of people aged 16 and over. 81% of them were aged 50 and older, and more than half (50.5%) were aged 65 plus. Around one in five people aged 85 and over had previously served in the UK Armed Forces. 6.7% of households in Scotland included at least one UK Armed Forces veteran.

The Census statistics highlight areas where a significant proportion of the population is ex-service. Top of the list is Moray, with 9%. Areas where 5% or more of the population is ex-service are Angus, Argyll and Bute, Fife, Perth and Kinross, Highland, Scottish Borders, Clackmannanshire and Dumfries and Galloway. The areas with the biggest share of the ex-service population are Fife (9.8%), City of Edinburgh (6.5%), Highland (6%), Glasgow City (5.4%) and Aberdeenshire (4.8%). 9.4% of the ex-service population lives in the combined areas of South and North Lanarkshire. Find out more

Female Veterans Transformation programme

A 3-year, UK-wide and tri-service programme to improve support for female veterans has started with funding from the Armed Forces Covenant Fund Trust and NHS England, in partnership with the Cobseo Female Veterans Cluster and the Women’s Royal Army Corps Association.

The Female Veterans Transformation Programme is currently reaching out to female veterans through questionnaires and workshops and seeking the views of organisations providing services to female veterans. An early priority is to develop toolkit for use by service providers in the commercial, statutory and charitable sectors, helping transform service provision for female veterans. Find out more about the programme

In a recent study by Kings College London women veterans reported that military service was a constant balancing act between their identities as women, soldiers, partners, and mothers. They often faced challenges fitting into military culture and encountered gender-based discrimination, and harassment. More on the study

Regional collaboration forums for supporters of older veterans

Unforgotten Forces is inviting paid-staff and volunteers who support older veterans in Scotland to take part in its regional forums. Forum events take place every 3 months for the West, East, North and North-east of Scotland, with options to join online or in person. Involvement with an Unforgotten Forces partner charity is not required. Find out more

Veterans in the criminal justice system

Research by NACRO and University of Northampton, commissioned by the Forces in Mind Trust, explores the experiences of Veterans in the Criminal Justice System: barriers to identification and uptake of support, with perspectives from various UK nations. Read the summary report

Gambling harm and veterans

A research project is inviting veterans of the UK Armed Forces to participate in a survey to identify risk-factors that predict problem gambling in veterans, and to highlight how they interact with features of military-service (e.g., exposure to trauma, stress-coping, service living arrangements).

The aim of the Veterans' Habit Study is to better understand patterns and causes and develop future prevention and intervention measures within the British Armed Forces and MOD. The research follows a previous study which found that UK veterans were at increased risk of problem gambling. Find out more

Training for supporting people experiencing or at risk of gambling harms is available from RCA Trust. More about training

Scottish Veterans Commissioner May round-up

The Scottish Veterans Commissioner, Susie Hamilton, has published a roundup of her recent activities, including the 80th anniversary of D Day Commemorations. Read the article

Communities Round-Up

Weather readiness advice

The Met Office has published a ‘WeatherReady’ website that offers expert advice from carefully selected partner organisations to help people prepare for and respond to the weather, so they not only stay safe, but are able to make the most of it Visit the website

Events

Tue 23 July
Family Model Making
7.30pm – 9pm. Online, Zoom Meeting
A free Veterans Tribe Scotland event.
Email gerry.mcgregor@veteranstribescotland.co.uk
Fri 26 July
Sight Scotland Veterans Olympics 2024
A range of sports and activities such as, archery, acoustic shooting, bowling, boccia and an Olympics themed sports quiz for visually impaired veterans, with events taking place across Scotland.
To find out more, including how you can get involved, call the Sight Loss Information line on 0800 035 6409.
More information
Thu 31 October
Northeast Regional Forum Unforgotten Forces
2-3.30pm. To join the mailing list for this Forum email veteransproject@agescotland.org.uk
Various
Age Scotland workshops
Topics include dementia awareness and inclusion, home energy, benefits and health and wellbeing, with various dates and a mix of online and in-person delivery. Find out more

 

Funding

BFBS Big Salute

BFBS is inviting applications for up to £10,000 for its annual Big Salute grant round. It is looking to fund impactful projects that address the diverse needs of service personnel, veterans, and their families. Deadline 30th September 2024. Details and application

The Armed Forces Covenant

The Major Capital Grants Programme offers grants of £75,000 and £500,000 for projects completing significant refurbishment, including extensions and new builds, of rental accommodation for Veterans with a housing need. Larger grants may be available for exceptional projects, charities and social housing providers (with relevant experience) can apply. Next deadline 8 January 2025. Details and applications

The Veterans’ Foundation

Grants for charities, community interest companies and other organisations delivering charitable activity to support those in need among serving armed forces personnel, veterans, operationally qualified seafarers, and their immediate families. The grants fund a wide variety of projects including those that reduce homelessness, increase employment, provide welfare and medical support, increase confidence and social integration, as well as reduce dependence on alcohol and drugs. Details and application Next deadline: 30th July 2024 for a decision in September 2024.

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