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Military charities helpdesk launches in Herefordshire

Next month sees the launch of a new charity initiative to support armed forces veterans and their families in Herefordshire.

The military charities helpdesk will officially open on Tuesday 2 July 2013 and will be located in Herefordshire Council’s customer service centre in Franklin House, Hereford.  The helpdesk, which is a joint initiative between the Herefordshire Armed Forces Community Covenant task group, The Royal British Legion and national armed forces charity SSAFA, will provide free support and advice for ex-military personnel.

Volunteer case workers from The Royal British Legion and SSAFA will be on hand to offer advice on a range of issues such as welfare and benefits and will be able to signpost veterans and their families to other organisations for additional help and support. 

The Lord Lieutenant, the Countess of Darnley, said: “As one of the joint signatories of the Herefordshire Armed Forces Community Covenant, I am delighted to see this fine example of shared working to support the armed forces coming to fruition.”

Councillor Olwyn Barnett, chairman of Herefordshire Council, added: “This will be a useful service for armed forces veterans and their families living in Herefordshire.  We are very grateful to the volunteers from the military charities involved for giving up their time to support this worthy cause.”

Councillor Peter Sinclair-Knipe, chairman of the Herefordshire Armed Forces Community Covenant task group, said: “This is one of many projects which have been brought forward through the task group and I am proud to be working with such a dedicated group of individuals who are really making a difference for the armed forces community in the county.”

It is estimated that there could be up to 20,000 ex-military personnel living in Herefordshire, with local veterans from both the regular and reserve forces having served in conflicts from World War II to Afghanistan.

The military charities helpdesk will be open every Tuesday and Thursday between 11am and 3pm.