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Veterans Aid

2 min read Partner content

The frontline operational charity Veterans Aid has been awarded a £460,000 grant from The National Lottery Community Fund in support of its work with veterans in crisis.

Lottery Community fund logo

The award, delivered over a period of three years, will fund a Rapid Counselling Response for Veterans service, a project to provide immediate and accessible one-to-one counselling sessions to veterans who are homeless, facing homelessness, have a drug/alcohol addiction or other crisis -  regardless of their location, situation, or needs.

The project is also aimed at improving the mental health and wellbeing of veterans who are experiencing psychological distress, such as anxiety, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) or moral injury, without the long delays that would exacerbate their situation.

CEO of Veterans Aid Dr Hugh Milroy said, "We are delighted to be recipients of this life-changing award which is an affirmation of our successful model and an acknowledgment that speed is of the essence when dealing with individuals who are spiralling ever-deeper into  dysfunctionality and despair.  Delay in getting appropriate help compounds problems; it makes  recovery harder, more costly - and significantly longer to effect.

"The reasons why veterans need counselling are complex, multiple  and often overlapping. They can include  addiction, relationship breakdown, unemployment, sexual trauma, legacies of abuse or  underlying issues in addition to the initial problem presented. VA's Rapid Counselling Response for Veterans service aspires to provide a safe and supportive environment in which its clients  can receive the help they need, when they need it, without any obstructive processes or delays. "

Counselling will be tailored to the primary needs of each veteran, with the caveat that it is an unpacking process that frequently identifies underlying as well as obvious problems. Veterans Aid enjoys an audited 90% success rate in transforming the lives of veterans in crisis, a record it attributes in part to speed of intervention and delivery of holistic support. The targeted rapid counselling service, enabled by the Community Lottery award, builds on that achievement.

"Our commitment has always been to Caring for Veterans in Crisis . . . Now!" said Dr Milroy, "because support delayed is support denied to some, and when individuals suffer, families and friends are also affected. By stepping in with expert support at point of need we can stop that happening."


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