As part of its partnership with The Royal Foundation’s Endeavour Fund, The Forces in Mind Trust (FiMT) is supporting ‘Walk on Wales’ with a grant of £30,000 towards funding safety equipment, vehicles and administration costs for the event which started on 25th August 2013.

Up to 5,000 people (at intervals) are expected to join 11 teams of veterans walking the entire coastal route of Wales (874 miles).  Many of the team members are of the Falklands generation.

Money raised from the event will go towards Combat Stress and the Welsh Guards Afghanistan Appeal.

FiMT is currently funding a number of research, and evaluation projects as well as making direct grants to military and civilian partner charities and organisations.  Each initiative provides an evidence base from which to improve the transition process that Service personnel and their families undergo as they to move into civilian life.  The funds come from a £35 million endowment awarded to the Trust by the Big Lottery Fund in January 2012.

The Endeavour Fund, created by The Royal Foundation, provides opportunities for injured Servicemen and women to take part in sporting and adventure challenges as part of their recovery and subsequent transition into civilian life. The Endeavour Fund offers seed funding for new endeavors and help emerging initiatives with advice, hands on support and mentoring. The Royal Foundation and Forces in Mind believe that the Fund will play an important role in ensuring that more wounded Servicemen and women have the opportunity to rediscover their self-belief and fighting spirit.

Jan Koops, one of the Walk’s founders, said: “As one of three people who are walking the 870-miles, I have been bowled over by the amount of support Walk on Wales has had so far. Already, I’ve met dozens of people who’ve been impacted upon by conflict, whether they be veterans, or families and loved ones. As well as raising money for the Welsh Guards Afghanistan Appeal and Combat Stress, I feel that we are also raising awareness as we go along. For me, this is a personal pilgrimage that I have wanted to do for a very long time. So far, it has completely exceeded my expectations. ”

Nick Booth, CEO of The Royal Foundation of The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry, said: “it is partnerships with organisations like FiMT which make events like Walk on Wales possible.

This project, combined with the other projects we are funding as part of our partnership with FiMT will enable Combat Stress and the Welsh Guards Afghanistan Appeal to continue their work in Wales which is core to the Endeavour Fund’s philosophy.

The Chief Executive of the Forces in Mind Trust, Air Vice-Marshal Ray Lock said:

“I am delighted that through the mutual determination of The Royal Foundation and FiMT we can enable events like Walk on Wales to take place by providing initial core funding. We wish Walk on Wales every success and know the walk will be an amazing experience for everyone taking part.

“The value of FiMT’s partnership with The Royal Foundation lies not just in what each project does for the individual participant – although that is significant enough – but in the inspiration it provides across the community, and in the demonstration of the ability of wounded, injured or sick Servicemen and women to make a successful transition to civilian life.  Our ex-Servicemen and women should become defined not by their disability, but by their capability; that is our shared aim.

“As well as providing grants for events like this, we also have a number of research and pilot projects currently in progress.  We will use the resulting evidence base to commission and award grants to further research and programmes in conjunction with partner organisations that support the transition process”.

The Walk

Opened in 2012 and stretching 870 miles along the coast, the Welsh Coast Path, stretches from the

mouth of the River Dee to the market town of Chepstow. The path follows the north Wales coast with its seaside towns, over the Menai Strait onto the Isle of Anglesey, continuing along the Llyn Peninsula, down the majestic sweep of Cardigan Bay, through Britain’s only coastal National Park in Pembrokeshire, via Gower with its stunning scenery, and includes the waterfront of Cardiff Bay and Cardiff, the capital city of Wales.

For the purpose of the Walk, The Welsh Coast Path has been divided into 11 stages (with each stage to be led by a team of four headed by a Welsh Guard with members of the public, schools, cadets and local business employees being encouraged to walk part of or all of the stages).

Joining In

Anyone wishing to take part in Walk on Wales can sign up on The Walk on Wales website

www.walkonwales.org where a sponsorship form and information pack is available to download.

Donations can be made via uk.virginmoneygiving.com/team/walkonwales2013.

About The Royal Foundation of The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry

The Royal Foundation was set up by The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry and is the culmination of their charitable lives so far and will be the principal vehicle for Their Royal Highnesses’ future charitable activities.

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry aim to make the following their early areas of focus:

  • Veterans and military families
  • Conservation and sustainable development
  • Children and young people

The Endeavour Fund is a restricted fund set up by the Foundation to supported wounded servicemen and women providing physical challenges as part of their recovery and subsequent transition into civilian life. The Endeavour Fund managed by an Advisory Board which reports to the Royal Foundation’s trustees.

For interview request, photos or more information, please contact the FiMT Press Office:

Alice Farrow at The PR Office:  afarrow@theproffice.com  / mobile:  07788 540 924 / direct dial: 027 284 6955

Talia Cohen at The PR Office: tcohen@theproffice.com / mobile: 07887 512 840 / direct dial: 0207 284 6957