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Veterans Aid CEO to take up new role on the international stage

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Veterans Aid

4 min read Partner content

Dr Hugh Milroy OBE’s appointment will allow Veterans Aid to work more closely with global partners on the promotion of wellbeing for ex-servicemen and women.

Wing Commander (Retd) Dr Hugh Milroy OBE, CEO of the UK Charity Veterans Aid, has been appointed as a Vice President of the World Veterans Federation (WVF) and acting Chair of its Standing Committee on European Affairs.

The appointments were confirmed by WVF President Mr Dan-Viggo Bergtun and Secretary General Mr Anders Ramnerup who extended a warm welcome to Dr Milroy.

WVF logoMr Bergtun said: "Although voluntary, these roles affirm Veterans Aid’s position as a global influence within the veterans world. I have watched VA in action and I can see why it has gained an international reputation for excellence. Its focus, which puts veterans before process, represents a post-pandemic paradigm for veterans that actually works. The real test of fire for the VA model was the pandemic and its methodology withstood the pressures.

"It is rare to find such vision and leadership but it is clear that the global veteran family can only benefit from Dr Milroy’s move onto the global stage at a time when the WVF has a new and exciting strategy in place. He is widely known as an effective practitioner and thought leader whose views do not necessarily reinforce stereotypical narratives. This refreshing 'thinking out of the box' approach, based on a thoroughly tried and tested model, is needed now more than ever.

"Our strategic dream is becoming a reality and it will only get better as we learn from VA’s experience and knowledge. At this critical time it is vital that we don’t blindly accept veteran support systems that can leave veterans feeling abandoned and unacknowledged. For the future wellbeing of the global veterans' family we must actively promote what actually delivers and walk away from that which does not. To that end, as a global organisation with some 60 million members, we now unhesitatingly recommend the VA model to other veterans' organisations."

Dr Milroy  joins an illustrious group of International representatives who collectively form the WVF's Executive Board. He said: "I am honoured, humbled and delighted to be taking up these roles within the WVF and look forward to working with colleagues from around the world who have a shared commitment to veterans' wellbeing. Informally VA has been reaching out to, and forging links with, veterans organisations internationally for many years and it gives me great pleasure to be able to continue this work formally from such a prestigious platform.”

A 2020 snapshot of Veterans Aid's international interactions during the pandemic when support was provided to UK ex-servicemen and women in 24 countries.
A 2020 snapshot of Veterans Aid's international interactions during the pandemic when support was provided to UK ex-servicemen and women in 24 countries.

Since Dr Milroy took over as CEO of the 90-year-old charity for ex-servicemen and women in crisis in 2005 he has welcomed academics, politicians, students, journalists, ambassadors, and representatives of charities and benevolent organisations from all over the world to VA’s London HQ/Operations Centre.

In October, the charity's most recent overseas visitor, CEO of Vasey RSL Care, Ms Janna Voloshin, said: "It was a great experience to visit Veterans Aid in London and to meet Dr Hugh Milroy and his team. Our veterans in Australia face many of the same challenges as those in the UK . . . I note the focus of VA's support programme on working towards full independence and the expectation of commitment from a veteran . . . I have taken a number of very useful lessons and learnings and Iook forward to putting these into practice in shaping our own Vasey RSL Care V Centre Model and supporting Australian Veterans."

A Gulf War veteran who served in a number of tri-Service environments during his 17-year Royal Air Force career, Dr Milroy is also a Visiting Senior Lecturer in the Department of Psychological Medicine at King’s College London where he gives an annual lecture on veterans' issues. In 2016 he was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Civil Law from the University of East Anglia, where he gained his PhD, in recognition of his significant contribution to the understanding of international veterans’ wellbeing. He is also an active Visiting Fellow within its prestigious School of Social Work. 

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