Archive | March 2012


It is with great sadness that we have to announce that RBLI’s Chairman, Edwin Boorman OBE passed away on 14th March 2012 after a short illness.

Edwin will be greatly missed by all at RBLI, the wider village community and throughout Kent where he has been a stalwart Ambassador for the county as well as a former Kent County President of The Royal British Legion and it was for this that Edwin was awarded an OBE in 2002.

Edwin served RBLI tirelessly for well over 40 years and had been Chairman since 2000.

Under his leadership and through the many changes that have occurred in the passing years, RBLI has kept up to date by providing the very best in care and support to ex-Service men and women as well as disabled and disadvantaged people, whatever their background.

Edwin had a heartfelt passion and vision for the future of the Village and spread the word far and wide about what he called “Kent’s best kept secret”.  He was instrumental in bringing many of the “good and great” to RBLI last July to launch the Charity’s 2016 strategy in order to help spread the word.

Edwin was enormously proud of all the achievements of RBLI including the provision of the highest quality care provided in Gavin Astor House and latterly in Queen Elizabeth Court, the assisted living scheme that opened in 2005.

Edwin was always very proud of RBLI and we were privileged to have such an inspirational Chairman whose legacy will live on.

Chris Simpkins Visit

We were delighted to welcome Chris Simpkins, Director General of The Royal British Legion to RBLI last week.   Chris visited a number of areas of the business and took the opportunity to talk to RBLI employees about the work they do. In addition, we discussed opportunities that we could explore for our organisations to build on our collaborative working initiatives.

The Director General visited our Social Enterprise to observe the team making a range of products, including signs, pallets and toy model construction.  He was impressed by the significant changes since his last visit and was interested to hear about the recent monster truck build and, in particular, the size, scale and scope of this project.   
The Director General went on to meet the team delivering our LifeWorks programme and took the opportunity to talk to some of the soldiers undertaking the programme of assessment and employability related support.   Many of these are currently in the process of transitioning out of the Armed Forces due to injury.   

The visit concluded with a tour of the RBLI village site and an opportunity to talk to the Healthcare and Welfare teams about the integrated approach to delivering services such as healthcare, housing welfare and employment opportunities to our wider group of Armed Forces beneficiaries.   The team discussed the broad range of age groups, healthcare and welfare needs of individuals referred to RBLI and the very personalised approach that is taken.    The team provided a number of case study illustrations to our integrated services which enable individuals to develop at their own pace and to their maximum potential, fully embracing the RBLI philosophy of equipping our beneficiaries for independence through employment where possible and supporting them to prolong that independence.
Jane Waring spoke with Chris about the Health and Wellbeing programme that she is delivering to the Armed Forces Community.  Chris recommended that the RBL’s Education team should speak with Jane in order to share experiences and good practice.
Looking forward …

RBLI continues to work closely with The Royal British Legion, The Poppy Factory and Poppy Scotland as part of the Poppy Family.   We are looking forward to developing even more joint working initiatives with the Poppy Group in order to better serve the needs of the Armed Forces Community.  The strategic objectives of our organisations are clearly aligned and together we can make a real difference.