RMA – The Royal Marines Charity is delighted to have received two grants worth a total of £141,000 to help support a number of upcoming programmes designed to help improve the wellbeing, resilience and promote good mental health to those veterans who have served in Afghanistan and other recent conflicts, and their families.   

The money has been disseminated by the Royal Navy and Royal Marines Charity (RNRMC) on behalf of the Armed Forces Covenant Fund Trust’s Afghanistan Veterans’ Fund at the request of The Office for Veterans Affairs.  

It will be used to fund respite breaks and reunions in January and August/September 2023, following the success this year of two similar trips to Chamonix run by a double amputee Afghan veteran for other Afghan veterans. These proved to be exceptionally effective in assisting the attendees’ mental and physical wellbeing and continued recovery.  

It will also allow the Charity to continue providing a families’ respite holiday, run in early December for families of Iraq and Afghan veterans. This weeklong activity break, enjoyed by up to 50 beneficiaries, has previously been held in Norway to join with Norwegian veterans but, due to Covid, Scotland was the venue of choice last year. The impact of these holidays is significant in enabling families to share common challenges, allowing spouses to meet and form mutual support links as well as enable children in challenging home situations to meet each other and form friendships.

The current cost of living crisis is expected to see a rise in need from the Royal Marines Family and activities and breaks such as these all help to provide vital support, camaraderie, low level intervention and education for vulnerable veterans and their loved ones. 

In addition, one of the grants will fund two new RMA employees: another much-needed Tribunals Advocate and Pensions Adviser to help the Charity’s specialised team provide advice regarding entitlement on allowances, awards and pensions under the War Disablement Pension, Armed Forces Compensation Scheme and the Service Invaliding Pension Schemes (the team currently has a caseload of about 120 persons, of which approximately 40-50% are veterans of recent conflicts). 

This grant will also fund a Membership Coordinator, whose role is critical to the outreach and communication to veterans of recent campaigns.  

We would like to thank and recognise RNRMC, the Armed Forces Covenant Fund Trust and The Office for Veterans Affairs for their engagement and support to these initiatives, which are of huge benefit to members of our Royal Marines family.” 

Tom Wilson, Director of Development, RMA – The Royal Marines Charity