Wednesday, 17 January 2018

Standing shoulder to shoulder with the RAF Family 365 days a year

It may seem fitting that today, on Blue Monday, known as the most depressing day of the year, we are launching new services to support the emotional wellbeing of the RAF Family.

But as we know, anxiety and poor mental health is something people can experience at any time of year and is not confined to a month, let alone one day.

The theory behind Blue Monday comes from a calculation based on factors such as the weather, debt and time since Christmas, which were all said to contribute to the dreariest day of the year.

The RAF Benevolent Fund is passionate that no member of the RAF Family should face adversity alone.  We know how much poor mental health can affect the quality of people’s lives.  So that is why, along with our partnerships primarily with Anxiety UK and Cruse Bereavement Care, we believe that people facing poor mental health, anxiety or depression should be able to access support 365 days a year and that no one should suffer in silence.
And we want to help.  That is why we have expanded our current welfare services for RAF veterans. This now includes free emotional support for people suffering with anxiety and depression, support for bereavement and a listening, counselling and wellbeing service.

According to recent research, one in five veterans is likely to be living with a common mental health illness but many do not seek the help they need.
The free services that we are providing are available to both younger and older RAF veterans as well as those dependent family members who are experiencing difficulties.
Together, we will tackle these issues head on. While there is still a stigma associated with mental health, the situation has improved drastically since my time in the RAF, when mental health was rarely mentioned.

This year the RAF will celebrate its 100th anniversary.  Having been formed one year later, as the RAF’s leading welfare charity, we are proud to have stood side by side with the RAF Family throughout our history and are determined to continue to evolve to meet current and future needs.

Find out about the services that we offer to members of the RAF Family who may be affected by anxiety or depression – or many other forms of adversity - by visiting our wellbeing page on our website

Air Commodore Paul Hughesdon is the Director of Welfare and Policy at the RAF Benevolent Fund, which provides support for former and serving RAF personnel and their families. He served in the Royal Air Force between 1983 and 2009.

RAF Benevolent Fund and Relate - Relationship Support for Serving and Former RAF

Click HERE for more information

British Forces Post Office - Valentine's 2018 - Latest Recommended Posting Dates

Click HERE for more information

Tuesday, 16 January 2018

South Staffordshire Network for Mental Health - Toolbox

So what is Toolbox?
  • Toolbox is an open access, self-empowering, emotional wellbeing signposting service 
  • It involves an hour’s Toolbox appointment with a SSNMH Toolbox worker and 2 follow up evaluations
  • It is to help an individual become more aware of their emotional wellbeing, identify their own support network throughout the 4 identifiable stages of mental health experiences, Wellness, Illness, Distress and Crisis and be signposted to emotional wellbeing tools and services that may be helpful for them.
  • Individuals may self-refer for a Toolbox appointment or be referred through organisations.

Defence Discount Service - 50% off first year's membership of The Staffordshire Wildlife Trusts

50% off your first year's membership
The charity’s work is supported by around 15,000 members.  Each member receives a membership pack containing a guide to the Trust’s nature reserves, information on the charitable work of the Trust, a what’s on guide with details of hundreds of wildlife themed events and a copy of Staffordshire Wildlife Magazine which is sent to members three times per year to keep you informed of how your membership is helping to support the Trust’s conservation work.

Individual Was £33 Now £16.50

Joint Was £39 Now £19.50 

Family Was £45 Now £22.50

Click HERE for more information 

Monday, 15 January 2018

Birmingham Airport Jobs Fair - 19 January

Click HERE for more information

Staffordshire Mental Health Helpline

The Staffordshire Mental Health Helpline offers support to people who are 18 or over and have concerns about their own mental health or that of someone they know.
The service operates evenings and weekends 365 days a year, when most other mainstream mental health services are closed. It is free to contact from landlines, call boxes and mobile networks. Customers can contact the helpline during opening hours by phone, text, email or instant messaging through Brighter Futures website: The service is essentially a listening service where people can talk through their concerns safely and confidentially, receiving emotional support and exploring the options available to them. The service can also offer guidance about where to find other locally based support services.
In addition, we operate a ‘Ring-Out’ service from Friday to Sunday inclusive (Professional referral required) for persons who would benefit from further or more long term support.

We now offer a Support Call service, essentially this is a short term (one week at a time) service offering a call each evening for up to a week for a person who is experiencing difficulties, stresses or worries at present (referral form required)

RAF Centenary Gala - 31 March 2018

Royal Gala to mark the Centenary of the Royal Air Force on this special Easter weekend.
The Royal Air Force was formed on 1st April 1918 and on the eve of this historic event, our special and unique evening at the Royal Albert Hall will feature a star-studded programme to celebrate and commemorate the iconic and poignant occasions in its heroic 100 years and inspire the next 100 through our young people.
It will be a night of outstanding music, comedy, ceremonial drill, screen footage and personal recollections by those who have served – and continue to serve – in the defence of our country. Alongside some of our best known and treasured artists, you will see the Bands of the Royal Air Force, the Royal Air Force Squadronaires and Salon Orchestra alongside the Queen’s Colour Squadron of the Royal Air Force and the Royal Air Force Air Cadets .
Don’t miss this one in a Century occasion to show your support for the Royal Air Force as it marks its 100 years of outstanding service to the United Kingdom and be part of this unique tribute on 31st March.

Update on Carillion: Defence services to continue uninterrupted

Today's announcement about the financial situation of Carillion has no direct impact on services provided directly to those working for Defence, their families and the continuing work of the department.
Housing will continue to be serviced, catering facilities run, and buildings and offices cleaned, as well as other services the company is involved in providing.
There are extensive contingency plans for dealing with issues such as this to make sure that services to personnel and their families continue to be provided to a high standard. This remains a top priority for the department.
The facilities management contracts that provide catering, cleaning and maintenance services to Defence are all joint ventures involving partners in addition to Carillion. Contractually, these partners are required to continue to deliver services if one of the other partners fails. The department remains committed to these joint ventures, and has been working with relevant partners to ensure a smooth continuation of the provision of these services.
The MOD is confident in the robustness of these arrangements and the strength of the supporting suppliers.
Where Carillion is the sole provider of services, for example for construction projects, alternative arrangements are being put into place that will not affect Service personnel.
All Service personnel should continue to use pre-existing processes to report problems, including the use of the 24/7 helpdesk telephone numbers.”