Bringing the Armed Forces Covenant to Life was a one-day training event funded by FiMT. It was designed to build awareness of the Covenant across the two counties and was attended by staff from 13 local authorities and two universities.
In the months following the event, attendees reported increased levels of confidence and knowledge in how they can support their Armed Forces communities. They also noted improvements in their action plans and policies, better awareness of training for front-line staff, increased knowledge of the needs of the Armed Forces community and new partnerships with local organisations.
The training programme was a result of an announcement by the Minister for Housing and Homelessness and the Minister for Defence People and Veterans, which encouraged local authorities to consider how they could ensure that Covenant initiatives remained current and continued to support the Armed Forces community. This, coupled with available funding from FiMT, enabled the CMR Partnership to employ a Covenant expert to deliver the training programme and carry out a consultation exercise across the counties.
The evaluation follows the journey of the local authorities as they build a better awareness of the Covenant in their organisations and the CMR Partnership in designing and delivering the programme, exploring what it means in practice, and how local authorities can continue to best support their Armed Forces Communities.
The full report is available here.
Ray Lock, Chief Executive at FiMT says:
“This evaluation shows that by collaborating, and with relatively little funding, local authorities can develop and share good practice to improve delivery of their commitments under the Armed Forces Covenant. In just a matter of months, local authorities across Nottinghamshire and Leicestershire have built partnerships, renewed their commitments under the Covenant and understood how the principles can be embedded into their organisations. This isn’t complicated, but it does require commitment, and I’d encourage all local authorities to read the report and implement the lessons that will help improve the support they give to their own Armed Forces Communities.”
Julie Robinson, project lead for the Charnwood, Melton and Rushcliffe Armed Forces Covenant Partnership, says:
“We are very proud of the Charnwood, Melton and Rushcliffe partnership and through its work we have helped a number of organisations become more aware of issues relating to Armed Forces personnel and how they can support them.”
“We were delighted to share this learning with colleagues from other organisations and we are sure it will help them deliver better services to support serving and former Armed Forces personnel.”
NOTES TO EDITORS:
Ray Lock is available for interview. To arrange please contact James Gillies at email@example.com / 020 7700 6952 or Ana Carvallo-Phillips, Ana@amazonpr.co.uk / 020 7700 6952.
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.
Who we have helped: www.fim-trust.org/who-we-have-helped