Better Care

AFC user group

military serviceman
What is 'the armed forces community'?
The armed forces community is made up of serving members of the armed forces, reservists, veterans and their respective families.

Although definitions can slightly differ, a veteran is defined by the Ministry of Defence as “anyone who has served in HM Armed forces at any time, irrespective of length of service (including national servicemen and reservists).”

Service in the armed forces is different from other occupations. Apart from the obvious uncertainties and dangers, ex-servicemen and their families make many sacrifices to protect and serve the people of our country.

Service in the armed forces can lead to values, behaviours and beliefs that are different from that of the general population, and these differences can make the transition into civilian life and existing communities a challenging experience.

The armed forces community in the UK totals up to 10.5 million people (which include 4.8 million veterans and 5.37 million dependents). Current estimates put the veteran population (excluding dependants) in Birmingham at approximately 117,000. This could mean that almost one in ten people you come into contact with have served in the armed forces for at least one day.

Better care: healthier communities

In accordance with the Armed Forces Community Covenant, the Trust seeks to support armed forces personnel in their transition to civilian life and beyond.

Our aspiration is that individuals face no disadvantage as a result of service, while providing special consideration to those who have given most, such as the injured and bereaved.

Creating an armed forces community (AFC) user group is key to meeting these challenges. Through engaging with this community we will inform the development of our own services and understand how we can best meet the needs and expectations of the AFC now and in the future.

We also plan to develop training packages to inform the community about the support networks available to them in their local area. Pilot sites in Birmingham will act as a testing ground where strategic and tactical partnerships can be shaped. These will lead to the enablement of fast and effective support, tailored to the individual needs of service users.

How can you get involved?

Are you part of the armed forces community? Want to know more about the initiative?
Then please get in touch, either as an individual or as part of an associated organisation.

Click here to send an email to express your interest or find out more.