Edition 13

This week, our update includes news of our latest Impact Report, two new Mentors, Members branching out  – and a new arrival!

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Charity shows its Impact with new Report


RMA– The Royal Marines Charity newly-released Impact Report 2022-2023 shows that last year there was more demand than ever for the through-life services we offer to the Royal Marines and their dependents.

With fundraising activity severely limited because of COVID, the Charity nevertheless granted over £2M to the 22,300 individuals who turned to us for support – that’s equivalent to the entire population of a small town such as Tiverton or Totnes, the Shetland Islands, Renfrew, Kenilworth or Chichester.

Of that number, some 2,794 were in acute need – a similar number to those living in an average small village like Lympstone, Danderhall or Bletchingly.

Whether it is funding some of the very best prosthetics available, mental health therapy, help with training for career transitioning, addiction support, the cost of funerals and bereavement counselling or simply attending to the little things that make such a huge difference to the quality of life, the Charity pledges to always be there.

Branching out

We’ve been kept busy keeping up with the intrepid support shown by so many of the Charity’s Branches over the last few weeks, sending out lots of  the many fundraising kits needed to support the numerous walks, supermarket collections and festivals that the Branches  are carrying out.

We’d also like to make mention here of John Peel, Veteran Royal Marine and fundraiser extraordinaire for the RMA – The Royal Marines Charity,  who alerted us via his Facebook page that ‘it’s not all about Phys and bucket-rattling at the North Devon Branch’, of which he is Chairman.

‘The challenges we face come in many forms. One of our Branch members, Annita Marshall, tragically lost her RM husband a year ago – way before his time – so former WO1 RM Eric Bristow and I are attacking her garden and refurbishing her decking. She now has steps to access the garden, which we will landscape in the coming months’.

We continue to be humbled by all such remarkable examples of the unselfish, generous and cheerful support RMA Members so willingly give in contributing so much of their time to the Corps Family.  

Our Members never stop branching out and we’ve been delighted to hear that Carp Angling has become the 10th activity on RMA – The Royal Marine Association’s list to warrant its own specialised sports’ Branch.

A launch event will take place in Oxfordshire at the end of October, featuring a line-up of challenging competitions requiring the use of many different fishing styles.

Where some of the money goes


During July, our Health & Wellbeing team distributed 49 grants totalling almost £87,000 to 36 Veterans and eight Serving RM beneficiaries that included funding towards costs incurred because of serious illness, general cost of living and homelessness, and provision of various white goods’ replacement: this amount also included grants to five organisations such as Walking with the Wounded and Horseback UK which provide much-needed physical and psychological therapies to assist those in the Royal Marines Family with any mental health or recovery challenges.

Sitting on the fence

We’re thrilled to have unveiled our new Bottom Field ‘baby’!  Many of you will know that part of the well-used 21km Exe Estuary Cycle Trail runs alongside the perimeter fencing of the Royal Marine Commandos’ infamous ‘Bottom Field’ assault course at Lympstone.

Now we have a large banner here alerting the thousands of users each month travelling along the popular trail to the work carried out by RMA – The Royal Marines Charity.

The ‘Bottom Field’ has featured on numerous TV documentaries made about the Corps and is used regularly by troops as part of their tough Commando training. As a result, it proves an exciting distraction to many of those cycling or walking past and who stop to watch in awe at the physical prowess, sheer guts and determination needed to overcome the demanding obstacles.

We hope this will prove a perfect time for such interested bystanders to consider it worthwhile donating to the Charity, contributing to the lifelong support we offer to the very deserving RM Family.

Knowledge is power


The Employment & Education team is delighted to welcome two new South West -based Volunteer Mentors to its ranks.

Sarah Knight is co-founder and director of Tribus People. She has 20 years’ experience of helping companies across all sectors reach their full potential and secure the right talent, with special knowledge of working with SMEs.

Director of Cobalt Computer and Communications Solutions, Ian Dunstan, is proud of his company’s ability to help companies adapt very quickly to new product and better ways of doing things. Cobalt, experts in VOIP Telephone and IT systems, last year scooped the ‘Best Reseller Innovation Award’ at the Communication National Awards.

“Both will add great value to our already established group of mentors,” comments Zoe Darnbrough, RMA – The Royal Marines Charity’s E&E Manager. “Their day-to-day experiences in civvy street and outstanding knowledge of business practice is of immense benefit to our experienced in-house team.  

Their extra support in so generously giving of their time to help our in-house team support those in the Corps Family looking for guidance and support with career transitioning and self-employment, is invaluable.” 

Fundraising climbs to new heights 

The amount raised by Lee Spencer and Team Apogee during his recent GB Triathlon attempt  has continued to climb, and a huge thank you goes out to Team Apogee for their phenomenal support and contribution to the overall fundraising total which has now stands close to  £41,000. Although Lee was unable to join them on the final stretch in Scotland, they  nevertheless continued  the cycle from Scafell Pike, went on to summit Ben Nevis, before meeting up and heading with Lee to the finish at Spean Bridge. 

Without this dedicated and focused support, the Charity would not be able to continue its vital work and we are all extremely thankful and grateful for all your efforts. 

All fired up


The tickets sold like hot cakes and all available 100 places to take part in the RMA’s first ever Charity Firewalk have been snapped up. The daring challenge will take place during the Gone Wild Festival at Powderham Castle over the upcoming Bank Holiday Weekend (August 24th – 28th).

Our Fundraising team was delighted by the enthusiasm of these intrepid daredevils to strut their stuff – and unless they get cold feet beforehand, all will first be given some expert instruction from the firewalking organisers!

But that’s not all – after they’ve done their bit on the Saturday, 24 others take to the stage the next day to try and make an uncomfortable walk across thousands of Lego bricks!