Review launched into care and support for Scottish armed forces veterans

Care for Scottish veterans is being reviewed to try and improve support for ex-service men and women.

Charities and academics from the University of the West of Scotland (UWS) have launched a review into the care available to retired service personnel, funded by a £4 million grant.

The three-year long ‘Unforgotten Forces’ project will evaluate and develop the current services available to Scotland’s older veterans, with the aim of improving the care available to those over 65.

A total of 14 armed-forces charities, including Poppyscotland, Legion Scotland and the Defence Medical Welfare Service, will work on the project with contributions from retired veterans.

The funding for the work comes from a £4 million grant awarded by The Aged Veterans Fund using money from fines levied on the banking industry for manipulating the Libor rates.

Leading the project is Dr Liz Frondigoun, a senior lecturer in criminology and criminal justice at UWS.

Dr Frondigoun said: “As we get older, we unfortunately lose the close connections in our personal support network, which is why social and health care for the elderly is so important.

“We’ve found that some of Scotland’s veterans feel they must ‘make do’ and deal with issues such as loneliness because they are unaware of the services available to them.

“Unforgotten Forces isn’t just about evaluating the current work these organisations are doing, but also how we can spread the reach of these services to benefit those who have given so much for our country.”

Gary Gray, Head of Welfare Services at Poppyscotland, said: “Having commemorated the 100-year anniversary of the end of the First World War, the welfare of our veterans is at the forefront of many people’s minds.

“The research group will be asking for feedback from those using the services throughout the process, ensuring we are delivering exactly the support that our ex-Service personnel need.”