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Armed Forces Day

In the run up to Armed Forces Day, RBLI has undertaken a range of activities from open events to tea parties.   We’re proud to support this event to heighten awareness of Armed Forces communities, both those who are serving and those who have served, whether recently or some time ago.

The transition into civilian life for many Armed Forces families can be tough enough and RBLI will continue to do all that it can to ease the path.

When RBLI launched its new strategy last year our objective of placing beneficiaries at the heart of our activities remained at the forefront of our delivery plans.   RBLI’s core beneficiary group has always been disabled ex Service personnel and ensuring this group remains our priority was never more important than it is today.  In order to effectively deliver our objective we’ve integrated our approach to service delivery.  This ensures that each individual can access whichever elements of our support services they may need to achieve sustainable independence.    LifeWorks, our assessment and employability support programme, continues to go from strength to strength with 67% of those who undertake the course and are in a position to work, moving into employment.   We’ve also developed LifeWorks+, which offers assessment and support to spouses and partners of Armed Forces personnel who find themselves seeking work.

RBLI’s week will culminate with the signing of a Community Covenant with Tonbridge and Malling Borough Council, committing to work in partnership to ensure those with an Armed Forces background do not find themselves disadvantaged within the community.  The transition into civilian life for many Armed Forces families can be tough enough and RBLI will continue to do all that it can to ease the path.

Iain Duncan Smith Visit

Last Friday we welcomed The Rt Hon Iain Duncan Smith MP, Secretary of State for Work and Pensions and Tracey Crouch MP for Chatham and Aylesford.  The Minister met many RBLI employees as we explained how our model of a Social Enterprise fits neatly into the Big Society Agenda.    The Minister also had an opportunity to meet some of the Armed Forces personnel who had sustained life changing injuries or illness attending our LifeWorks course.   They explained to him how the vocational assessment and employability training they had received during the week would help them to understand their employment options and compete more effectively for civilian work opportunities.   

We were able to feedback to the Minister some suggestions to enable us all to offer the widest range of services to former Armed Forces personnel


At the same time we hosted a meeting of representatives from KCC, Jobcentre Plus, G4S and Service Charities; including the Poppy Factory and Royal British Legion to explore how organisations could work together more effectively to improve access to services for former Armed Forces personnel seeking work.  We were able to feedback to the Minister some suggestions for quick and easy wins that would ensure better data capture and integration of services to enable us all to offer the widest range of services to former Armed Forces personnel.  Thus ensuring we can work together to help meet the principles of the Military Covenant.
The Secretary of State displayed a genuine feel and understanding of the work of RBLI.  He interacted positively with everyone he met and the visit was a most positive stimulus for all.  

Armed Forces Covenant

I am a passionate and vocal supporter of the Armed Forces Covenant, which defines the relationship between the Armed Forces community, the Nation and the Government.  I believe that we have a moral obligation to the members of all three services and their families.  They deserve our respect, support and fair treatment.
‘This agreement is one that we at RBLI embrace fully. ’
The covenant aims to ensure that those that serve in the Armed Forces, whether Regular or Reserve, should face no disadvantage.  This obligation involves the whole of society and includes charitable organisations such as ours, private organisations and individuals. I believe that it is vital that we should honour the commitment and sacrifice of the Armed Forces, celebrate the work of those who support this community and make sure that we build close links between the Armed Forces and wider society. 

‘Without this joined up approach to support, we will fail these committed and brave men and women.’
I welcome the Government’s formal acceptance of responsibility and a duty to ensure that there is no disadvantage to members of this community.  Without this joined up approach to support, we will fail these committed and brave men and women.
This agreement is one that we at RBLI embrace fully.  I want to make sure that we do all we can to support our veterans and ensure that they too can look back on their careers with pride, from a position of independence and security.