by Press Officer on 16 January, 2013
The first application for an award from the Community Covenant Grant scheme for West Sussex has been approved.
Endorsed by the West Sussex Armed Forces Community Covenant, the Queen Alexandra Hospital Home (QAHH), Worthing, has gained funding for a part-time co-ordinator who will manage a growing volunteer team. The QAHH provides nursing and rehabilitation to disabled ex-servicemen and women.
The grant scheme, which is funded nationally and determined by the Ministry of Defence, supports local projects that strengthen the mutual understanding between members of the Armed Forces and the wider community in which they live.
The QAHH’s award is the first to be made through the West Sussex Community Covenant since it was signed by the County Council and the military community last year.
This is aimed at giving serving personnel, veterans and their families more support and recognition at local level and to reinforce the national Armed Forces Covenant.
The QAHH’s volunteer team currently numbers 59, but with the coordinator in place it wants to build on public sympathy for disabled veterans, of which there has been a growing number due to the on-going Afghan conflict. The Home hopes to encourage volunteering across the age groups and facilitate understanding between civilians and the veteran community.
It has been receiving many enquiries from people interested in becoming volunteers and it now hopes to nearly triple the numbers of volunteers to nearly 160 throughout 2013.
Volunteers undertake many roles at the home from administrative support to serving drinks in the coffee bar. However more importantly they provide residents with opportunities for social interaction, companionship and a sense of being part of a community. Volunteers play a crucial role in improving residents’ quality of life and well-being.
West Sussex County Council leader Louise Goldsmith said: “This is the sort of funding scheme we had in mind when we signed the Armed Forces Community Covenant for West Sussex.
“The QAHH does some wonderful work for veterans whose sacrifices have been underlined by the on-going conflict in Afghanistan. We all owe them a debt of gratitude for their service.
“It is pleasing to hear that many within our community want to become involved to provide crucial support to help in the recovery process and we hope this will foster a spirit of greater understanding between both.”
The QAHH’s Head of Fundraising, Juliet Stallard, said: “We were delighted to have received a grant from the Armed Forces Community Covenant Grant Scheme, which has fully funded our volunteer co-ordinator role at QAHH for 2013.
“Our volunteer co-ordinator will work towards engaging the community and encouraging people to volunteer their time to directly support the needs of our disabled veterans and improve their quality of life and independence.
“We hope that by encouraging volunteering we can build closer ties and integration between the civilian and ex-Service communities.”
Anyone who wants to volunteer at the QAHH can contact Jackie Bulmer on 01903 218444 or email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit http://www.qahh.org.uk/get-involved/volunteering/ for details of QAHH’s current vacancies.Leave a comment