South Yorkshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner, Dr Alan Billings, attended the Rotherham Military Community Veterans Centre (MCVC), held at the Voluntary Action Rotherham Building on Coke Hill in Rotherham.
He gave a brief talk to attendees at the centre, who have all served at some time in the armed forces. He explained the role of the Police and Crime Commissioner, his priorities and a general overview of his work.
During the visit the Commissioner spent time with individuals who explained how important the Military Community Centre was for them and how the service has helped signpost them to organisations offering additional help and support.
Dr Billings said: “I found the visit extremely interesting when speaking with the group and hearing about the personal experiences of each individual after leaving the armed forces. Many find the transition from military to civilian life difficult and this centre provides advice to get them the services they need.”
The centre was successful in securing £15,000 in the Commissioner’s 2014/15 Grant Scheme to fund a project support worker and holistic therapy practitioners.
The Commissioner continued: “It was good to see how grant funding is protecting vulnerable people who may be at a loss as to which way to turn after years of service.”
Lieutenant Colonel R A McPherson MBE met with the Commissioner and explained how the centre helped address issues affecting ex-armed forces personnel and their families.
He said: “This grant has made a significant and important impact on many more of the ex-service community than we had initially hoped. It has been a great help in establishing the MCVC in our communities and helping those who continue to struggle after life in the armed forces.
“It has also been a great benefit to have a part time worker funded by this project, and we not only thank The Commissioner for his support, but also thank Shaun Lyons who worked hard and did so much in his own time in support of the MCVC. We are very grateful.”
The MCVC meet each Friday from 10am to 12 noon at Voluntary Action Rotherham or for more information see https://rotherhammcvc.wordpress.com/