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Armed Forces charities help quarter of a million people with physical health issues

Forces in Mind Trust (FiMT) and the Directory of Social Change (DSC) today (25 January) release the report Focus On: Armed Forces Charities’ Physical Health Provision, which reveals that 121 charities deliver services to at least 250,000 beneficiaries in the Armed Forces Community.

This ground-breaking research maps for the first time Armed Forces charities’ physical health support with the charities spending at least £103 million on physical health provision last year.

One charity to every 2,070 beneficiaries

The report reveals there is approximately one charity to every 2,070 beneficiaries accessing support for physical health. By comparison, this was roughly seven-times greater than the number of people accessing education/employment (one charity to every 450 beneficiaries) and 25 times greater than those accessing mental health support (one charity to every 130 beneficiaries). This finding highlights the huge demand for physical health services placed upon a small number of Armed Forces charities.

Variety and depth of provision

Analysis shows that many charities provide lifelong support for members of the Armed Forces community, across a range of specific injury and illness types (not all of which are attributable to Service life), with ‘limited mobility’ being the most commonly supported type of injury/illness. The most commonly provided services also include recreation-based support, adapted housing provision, and respite services.

The report highlights a range of clinical and non-clinical services, from physiotherapy and nursing to adapted housing and scuba diving. DSC also explore the variety and depth of provision being made by Armed Forces charities, which can have a dramatic effect on an individual’s recuperation from injury or improved quality of life for an ageing veteran population.

Grant-making practices, best practice, partnerships between charities, and collaboration with other healthcare providers are also explored in DSC’s latest research.

Tom Traynor, Head of Research at the Directory of Social Change, said: “DSC are proud to extend our relationship with FiMT, who we have partnered with since 2014 to produce insightful research on the armed forces charity sector.

“The aim of the Focus On series is not only to highlight the vital work our armed forces charities do for their respective beneficiaries, but also to create a better knowledgebase for policymakers and these charities to continue to act in the best interests of our Armed Forces community.”

Ray Lock, Chief Executive of the Forces in Mind Trust, said: “The purpose of FiMT is to enable all ex-Service personnel and their families to make a successful and sustainable transition back into civilian life. By funding reports, such as this Focus On series, evidence-based knowledge can be presented to policy makers and service deliverers to influence and bring about change where needed.

“This detailed report provides an important insight into the physical health support a relatively small number of charities provide to the Armed Forces Community across the UK.”

Focus On: Armed Forces Charities’ Physical Health Provision is the third of six reports from DSC which provide detailed information on Armed Forces Charities’ support for key areas of need. Download the free report at www.dsc.org.uk/physical-health

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Note to Editor: 

DSC Research Manager – Stuart Cole, is available for comment or interview via scole@dsc.org.uk or 0151 708 0136.

About DSC: Founded in 1974, the Directory of Social Change (DSC) is a national charity which champions an independent voluntary sector through campaigning, training and publications. DSC is the largest supplier of information and training to the voluntary sector, and its work helps tens of thousands of organisations every year achieve their aims. Learn more at www.dsc.org.uk.

Ray Lock is available for interview. To arrange please contact Tina McKay, Communications Officer at FiMT on co@fim-trust.org or on 07956 101132 or 0207 901 8916.

About the Forces in Mind Trust (FiMT):

FiMT came about from a partnership between the Big Lottery Fund (‘the Fund’), Cobseo (The Confederation of Service Charities) and other charities and organisations. FiMT continues the Fund’s long-standing legacy of support for veterans across the UK with an endowment of £35 million awarded in 2012. http://www.biglotteryfund.org.uk/.

The mission of FiMT is to enable ex-Service personnel and their families make a successful and sustainable transition to civilian life, and it delivers this mission by generating an evidence base that influences and underpins policy making and service delivery.

FiMT awards grants (for both responsive and commissioned work) to support its change model around 6 outcomes in the following areas: Housing; Employment; Health and wellbeing; Finance; Criminal Justice System; and Relationships. All work is published in open access and hosted on the Forces in Mind Trust Research Centre’s Veterans and Families Research Hub. A high standard of reportage is demanded of all grant holders so as to provide a credible evidence base from which better informed decisions can be made.

Useful links

Website: www.fim-trust.org

Reports: www.fim-trust.org/reports/

Who we have helped: www.fim-trust.org/who-we-have-helped/

Twitter: @FiMTrust

About the Mental Health Research Programme: www.fim-trust.org/mental-health/research-programme/

Funding awarded to research negative transition from the Armed Forces

Forces in Mind Trust (FiMT) has awarded £179,848 to Queen’s University Belfast to conduct a three-year, UK-wide study of the experiences of ex-Service personnel who have had an adverse transition back into civilian life.

The research will cover all four nations of the UK, and will look specifically at those who have ended up homeless, in prison or under mental health supervision.

The project aims to build on current knowledge regarding ‘pathways to failure’, and will do this through undertaking qualitative research to include two case studies of voluntary sector support provision, one in Birmingham, the other in Glasgow, as well as conducting interviews with ex-Service personnel, support staff, and with family members of those who have experienced a ‘negative transition’.

As the focus will be on the lived experiences of those interviewed, this will identify potential differences in experiences, such as between regular and reserve forces, male and female ex-Service personnel, and early Service leavers compared to longer-term personnel.  Geographical location will also be taken into consideration, looking at broader social and cultural factors and how these influence attitudes and responses.

Evidence will be gathered through qualitative research with a large sample of 250, comprising interviews with 150 ex-Service personnel and approximately 50 adult family members, as well as two ethnographic case studies.  The research will identify key factors that impact on negative transitioning, contributing to the body of knowledge that exists on those who struggle to transition successfully.

Ray Lock, Chief Executive of Forces in Mind Trust said: “Forces in Mind Trust was created to ensure that ex-Service personnel have a successful and sustainable transition to civilian life. Of course, the definition of successful lies very much in the eyes of the beholder, and therefore failed (or adverse, or negative) transition is a subjective and highly contextual judgment. But demonstrably some are relatively easy to define, although our understanding of how an ex-Service person reaches this point is scant.

“By funding this Queen’s University Belfast project, and presenting the findings to service providers and policy makers, we will improve the transition pathway for the most vulnerable. By hearing directly from ex-Service personnel and their families, those who work in such supporting areas will be able to prevent the same difficulties happening to others.”

Professor John Brewer, from the Senator George J. Mitchell Institute at Queen’s and the Principal Investigator on the project, said: “I am looking forward to working with Forces and Mind Trust and am grateful that they acknowledged the importance of research that explores the life experiences of those ex-Service personnel who were transitioning very negatively back to civilian life.

“It is time we understood the factors that lie behind homelessness, mental ill-health and the prison experience of former Service men and women from their own perspective and in their own words.”

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Note to Editor:  Ray Lock and Professor John Brewer are available for interview. To arrange please contact Tina McKay, Communications Officer at FiMT on co@fim-trust.org or on 07956 101132 or 0207 901 8916.

About the Forces in Mind Trust (FiMT):

FiMT came about from a partnership between the Big Lottery Fund (‘the Fund’), Cobseo (The Confederation of Service Charities) and other charities and organisations. FiMT continues the Fund’s long-standing legacy of support for veterans across the UK with an endowment of £35 million awarded in 2012. http://www.biglotteryfund.org.uk/.

The mission of FiMT is to enable ex-Service personnel and their families make a successful and sustainable transition to civilian life, and it delivers this mission by generating an evidence base that influences and underpins policy making and service delivery.

FiMT awards grants (for both responsive and commissioned work) to support its change model around 6 outcomes in the following areas: Housing; Employment; Health and wellbeing; Finance; Criminal Justice System; and Relationships. All work is published in open access and hosted on the Forces in Mind Trust Research Centre’s Veterans and Families Research Hub. A high standard of reportage is demanded of all grant holders so as to provide a credible evidence base from which better informed decisions can be made.

Useful links

Website: www.fim-trust.org

Reports: www.fim-trust.org/reports/

Who we have helped: www.fim-trust.org/who-we-have-helped/

Twitter: @FiMTrust

About the Mental Health Research Programme: www.fim-trust.org/mental-health/research-programme/

 

Queen’s University Belfast is ranked in the top one per cent of universities in the world (QS World Rankings 2018 / webometrics.info) and is part of the Russell Group of universities, combining excellence in research and education with a student-centred ethos. Queen’s is ranked 8th in the UK for Research Intensity with over 75% of its research assessed as ‘world-leading’ or ‘internationally excellent’ in REF 2014, and is one of the UK’s leading institutions for research commercialisation.

FiMT Working Together Award Finalists – Soldiering on Awards 2018

Forces in Mind Trust (FiMT) is delighted to announce the three finalists for their Working Together Award at the 2018 Soldiering on Awards.

The award, sponsored by FiMT, is in recognition of a person, team or organization that has demonstrated enduring commitment and collaborative approach to supporting the Armed Forces sector within the wider community.

This year’s finalists are; Nick Wood of York St John University, Cobseo Housing Cluster and Battling on CIC.

Ray Lock, Chief Executive of Forces in Mind Trust said: “The Soldiering on Awards are a great way to acknowledge the achievements of those who serve in, and support, the Armed Forces Community.

“Forces in Mind Trust is exceptionally pleased with the high calibre of finalists for the Working Together Award. I would like to congratulate, and thank, all finalists for their commitment to supporting the Armed Forces and the collaboration they have championed across many sectors.”

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Note to Editor:  Ray Lock is available for interview. To arrange please contact Tina McKay, Communications Officer at FiMT on co@fim-trust.org or on 07956 101132 or 0207 901 8916

About the Forces in Mind Trust (FiMT):

FiMT came about from a partnership between the Big Lottery Fund (‘the Fund’), Cobseo (The Confederation of Service Charities) and other charities and organisations. FiMT continues the Fund’s long-standing legacy of support for veterans across the UK with an endowment of £35 million awarded in 2012. http://www.biglotteryfund.org.uk/.

The mission of FiMT is to enable ex-Service personnel and their families make a successful and sustainable transition to civilian life, and it delivers this mission by generating an evidence base that influences and underpins policy making and service delivery.

FiMT awards grants (for both responsive and commissioned work) to support its change model around 6 outcomes in the following areas: Housing; Employment; Health and wellbeing; Finance; Criminal Justice System; and Relationships. All work is published in open access and hosted on the Forces in Mind Trust Research Centre’s Veterans and Families Research Hub. A high standard of reportage is demanded of all grant holders so as to provide a credible evidence base from which better informed decisions can be made.

Useful links

Website: www.fim-trust.org

Reports: www.fim-trust.org/reports/

Who we have helped: www.fim-trust.org/who-we-have-helped/

Twitter: @FiMTrust

About the Mental Health Research Programme: www.fim-trust.org/mental-health/research-programme/

Research to improve delivery of the Armed Forces Covenant

Forces in Mind Trust (FiMT) has awarded £174,737 to Shared Intelligence and NatCen, to research how organizations, excluding Local Authorities and Government departments, are delivering pledges under the Armed Forces Covenant in Great Britain.

The decision to commission this research came about from the impact of FiMT’s Our Community-Our Covenant report and the desire to understand delivery of the Armed Forces Covenant more widely.  Shared Intelligence, in partnership with NatCen, were appointed to deliver this research following a competitive tender process.

The research will explore two main areas;

  • Employment opportunities for the Armed Forces Community and any relevant policies or practices employers have in place, and
  • The provision of services to the Community, covering a broad range of sectors such as commercial contract variations or support offered by social groups.

Organizations who have not signed the Armed Forces Covenant, and their reasons for this, will also be explored as part of this project.

Evidence from the research will provide ideas on how the delivery of the Covenant could be improved, and offer recommendations for local and national levels in support of this.

Ray Lock, Chief Executive of Forces in Mind Trust said: “Forces in Mind Trust was created to ensure that all ex-Service personnel and their families have a successful and sustainable transition to civilian life. The delivery of the Armed Forces Covenant has a significant impact on the transition pathway.

This timely research will identify how improvements to the delivery of the Covenant could be made.  It will be essential reading for all organizations, including service providers and policy makers, who share in the nation’s commitment to the UK Armed Forces Covenant.”

Phil Swann, Executive Chair of Shared Intelligence said: “We are committed to ensuring that this research helps to increase the use of the Covenant to reflect the contribution of the Armed Forces Community.”

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Note to Editor:  Ray Lock is available for interview. To arrange please contact Tina McKay, Communications Officer at FiMT on co@fim-trust.org or on 07956 101132 or 0207 901 8916.

Phil Swann is available for interview. Please contact phil.swann@sharedintelligence.net or call 020 7756 7600

About the Forces in Mind Trust (FiMT):

FiMT came about from a partnership between the Big Lottery Fund (‘the Fund’), Cobseo (The Confederation of Service Charities) and other charities and organisations. FiMT continues the Fund’s long-standing legacy of support for veterans across the UK with an endowment of £35 million awarded in 2012. http://www.biglotteryfund.org.uk/.

The mission of FiMT is to enable ex-Service personnel and their families make a successful and sustainable transition to civilian life, and it delivers this mission by generating an evidence base that influences and underpins policy making and service delivery.

FiMT awards grants (for both responsive and commissioned work) to support its change model around 6 outcomes in the following areas: Housing; Employment; Health and wellbeing; Finance; Criminal Justice System; and Relationships. All work is published in open access and hosted on the Forces in Mind Trust Research Centre’s Veterans and Families Research Hub. A high standard of reportage is demanded of all grant holders so as to provide a credible evidence base from which better informed decisions can be made.

Useful links

Website: www.fim-trust.org

Reports: www.fim-trust.org/reports/

Who we have helped: www.fim-trust.org/who-we-have-helped/

Twitter: @FiMTrust

About the Mental Health Research Programme: www.fim-trust.org/mental-health/research-programme/

About the consultants

Shared Intelligence is a consultancy which uses data and evidence, facilitated conversations and logical ways of thinking to help our clients deliver better outcomes for the places and communities they serve.

NatCen is Britain’s largest independent social research agency. For the last 40 years we’ve worked on behalf of government and charities to find out what people really think about important social issues and how Britain is run.