Armed Forces Day 26 June 2021
Armed Forces Day is a chance for everyone to show their support for the people who make up the Armed Forces community; from currently serving troops to Service families, veterans and cadets.
As well as supporting colleagues who are part of the volunteer reserve forces; last year, we were proud to have been revalidated for the prestigious Gold award as part of the Ministry of Defence’s Employer Recognition Scheme (ERS) 2020, as one of only 14 NHS trusts in the country to receive the gold award.
The Armed Forces Covenant is a promise from the nation that those who serve or have served, and their families, are treated fairly. We work with local Armed Forces resources and support services, to ensure improved health outcomes for serving personnel, veterans and their families who are patients in our Trust. We also have many staff working in our hospitals who have previously been members of the Armed Forces, have partners in the Armed Forces, or serve as Reservists. They are best placed to understand the difficulties these patients and their families experience, and the healthcare challenges they face.
We are proud to be a Veteran Aware Trust, accredited to the Veterans Covenant Hospitals Alliance
Read more about the Armed Forces Covenant
Stories from our Armed Forces Champions
Our network of Armed Forces Champions all have personal reasons behind their support. Two of them share their stories below.
Julie Connell, Head of Education Systems:
"I served in the military for 4 years as a Military Policewoman, so with a forces background, I felt that this was something I would like to help to develop to support my military family. My father served in the RAF, I met my husband whilst serving – he was in the Royal Signals. This combined with my own background is not just a transient connection; when you have served in the forces, it’s a connection for life.
"Our Armed Forces are the backbone of our country and when you have served in the forces, you live, breathe and understand the amazing role that they play in our lives, protecting and safeguarding our country.
"The most important message for Armed Forces Day is that we honour those who sacrifice their lives for our country, and we also need to honour all our service soldiers, sailors, airmen and their families who play an equally significant role in ensuring they are the very best of the very best."
Luke McShane, Therapy Support Worker:
"I am a veteran of the Armed Forces, having served for 8 years. I am a part of the younger generation of veterans who were involved in the war on terrorism. My Dad was also in the Army, so I grew up within the military culture and environment for a large period of my life. I served across services, and spent most of my time in the Army, seeing active service in this period.
"I am also a volunteer listener for All Call Signs, providing any advice I can to serving personnel and veterans of the military experiencing crisis.
"The Armed Forces are in a difficult line of work, similar to the emergency services, police, ambulance and fire services. You are in a position that is important and exposes you to high demand and stressful situations. This may then have a knock-on effect of physical and mental health; therefore the Trust's support for the Armed Forces is a really positive step.
"From my own experience, veterans and serving personnel find it difficult talking about hardship. Being able to speak with somebody who has a shared language, culture and experiences has been shown to work. We are conditioned in the military to look after each other, the “buddy-buddy system”.
"It is good to see the Trust actively trying to connect serving personnel and veterans with those that have more of an understanding of their experiences."
"It is good to see the Trust actively trying to connect serving personnel and veterans with those that have more of an understanding of their experiences."Luke McShane, Healthcare Assistant