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Help for the Armed Forces community

If you are leaving the Armed Forces, the five key areas to consider are:


Welfare

You will have been guided through your transition in civilian life with your Unit Welfare officer but if you need further support the Service Personnel and Veterans Agency (SPVA) are there for anyone who has served in the forces. SPVA provides advice on benefits, compensation payments, pensions and much more.


VeteransUK provides a full range of information for people injured, disabled and bereaved in the service, including details of the Armed Forces Compensation Scheme, War Disablement Pensions and Armed Forces Pensions. A specialist helpline is available on:

  • Tel: 0800 169 2277


Employment

If you have left the forces and haven’t yet secured employment you can organise an interview with the Job Centre Plus. They will advise you on claiming Job Seekers Allowance and offer priority access to mainstream Jobcentre Plus programmes.

When you leave the army you maybe entitled to a range of benefits, whether work is found immediately or not.


Education

Your resettlement support programme will entitle you to access training advice and courses. This is dependent on your length of service:

  • Early Service Leaver Support Programme, those who have served less than four years’ service.
  • Employment Support Programme, those who have served four to six years’ service.
  • Full Resettlement Programme for those with six or more years’ service or those leaving on medical grounds or redundancy.

Graduated Resettlement Time (GRT) can enable you to choose how you use your resettlement time. You are entitled to access the GRT scheme once you have completed six years of service. The Career Transition Partnership (CTP) is the MOD’s provider of further resettlement services.


Housing

Finding somewhere to live maybe a big challenge. If you have nowhere to live post discharge, be sure to notify us as soon as possible. If you are single and about about to leave the forces, the Single Persons Accommodation Centre for the Ex-Services (SPACES) may be able to help:

If you are looking to buy your own property, you can get independent financial advice from Moneyforce. Moneyforce is the home of money advice for the UK service personnel and their families. It includes an innovative budget planner, car cost calculator and credit forecaster.

Credit Union in association with Clockwise

We have agreed to develop a three-year partnership arrangement with Clockwise Credit Union to develop and expand its services in the area – in order to stamp out the loan sharks.

Credit unions are community banks that are democratically controlled by their members and are set up as not-for-profit. There are no external shareholders so the cash stays within the community.

Discretionary Housing Payments (DHP's)

DHP's provide extra help with your rent if needed. Consider applying if you have a shortfall in rent caused by the bedroom tax, benefit cap or other reductions in housing benefits.

Housing Benefit should not be reduced due to the bedroom tax for a room usually occupied by a member of the armed forces who is serving away providing they intend to return to your home. You don’t have a repay a DHP.


Health

It is important that when you leave the forces that you and your family register with a local doctor and dentist. You will need your NHS number and FMed 113 – this is a summary of your medical documents you will have been sent after you’ve been discharged.

The NHS runs a free text message service called NHS Choices Mobile, this is accessed by texting a keyword such as A&E, dentist, pharmacy to 64746 you will be sent a free text giving assistance.

NHS Direct also provides 24-hour medical advice, to access the service:


More information and advice links for transitioning

The Royal British Legion offers a range of financial assistance services, including benefits and money advice, grants and loans. A handy van service is offered which provides a free, dedicated handy person to carry out small home repairs and alterations.


SSAFA is a national charity that provides support to thousands of armed forces personnel and their families. The Leicestershire branch can be contacted on:


The Veterans Council
 provides impartial information to help you make choices about what support is available to you and gain a better understanding of your needs. You can contact the team on:

  • Tel: 01744 731 099


The veteran’s information portal is for veterans to quickly locate service and support providers across five pillars of support – employment, education and training, health and welfare, finance and housing.

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