Funding has been secured by three councils to help serving and former Armed Forces personnel in their communities.
Charnwood, Rushcliffe and Melton Borough councils have successfully bid for £97,000 from the Covenant Fund. Each council has signed the Armed Forces Covenant to show its commitment to supporting former and serving personnel in the area.
The grant will mean the councils can appoint a development worker to help improve understanding of issues facing military personnel in the area to improve the support available and work with other organisations and businesses to encourage them to sign up to the Armed Forces Covenant.
A key part of the role will also be to liaise with staff and personnel at the under-construction Stanford Hall Defence National Rehabilitation Centre (DNRC) which is on the border of all three council areas.
The DNRC is due to open in 2018 and will treat injured military personnel, replacing Headley Court in Surrey.
Chris Traill, Strategic Director of Neighbourhoods and Community Wellbeing at Charnwood Borough Council which led the bid, said: “We are delighted to have secured this funding as it will greatly improve our knowledge and understanding of the issues facing serving and former military personnel so we can decide how best to help them in our communities.
“We are proud to support our Armed Forces and we want to do our best to help those people who have been willing to make the ultimate sacrifice for our country.”
Dave Mitchell, Executive Manager for Communities at Rushcliffe Borough Council, said: “We are proud that Stanford Hall in Rushcliffe will shortly become home for the Defence National Rehabilitation Centre. The grant from the Armed Forces Covenant Fund will enable us to work with our neighbouring councils to provide the best support possible to both the new military personnel who will settle here and the longstanding Armed Forces personnel in our communities.”
Harry Rai, Head of Communities and Neighbourhoods at Melton Borough Council said: “This is excellent news, the Council is really committed to delivering on the Armed Forces Community Covenant and this will help us deliver the much-needed support and help for former and serving personnel who have, over the years, done so much for us.”
The Armed Forces Covenant is a promise by the nation to ensure that those who serve or who have served in the armed forces, and their families, are treated fairly. Groups, organisations, charities, local authorities and businesses are encouraged to sign up to it.
The Ministry of Defence’s Armed Forces Covenant Fund offers £10 million a year to community projects which support existing and former service personnel in their communities.