Trafford Veterans have been instrumental in supporting people during the covid crisis. Read about their journey and how they plan to continue to make a difference in the future.
Trafford Veterans was set up in 2015 to provide peer support and outreach in the Borough of Trafford, Greater Manchester. Trafford Veterans run a number of activities and encourage people to share their hobbies and skills to form new projects and groups.
Trafford Veterans are keen to establish a Hub in Trafford that could be used as a one stop shop for service veterans and emergency service community. The vision is to have a place which is close to good transport links, so that people can easily drop in for advice, activities or just for some company, have a chat and a cup of tea and be with like-minded people.
Trafford Veterans is a local community organisation run by volunteers. They have required some financial grant aid support in order to provide some of their activities for Veterans. They have also sought support in making their organisation more sustainable with the intention of recruiting a paid member of staff and establishing a base.
How we helped:
Since January 2018 THT have grant aided Trafford Veterans on three occasions: for an allotment project, a model making and craft group and a walking football group to a total of £3,890.
Since the onset of the Covid Crisis we have worked more closely with Trafford Veterans in order to support them to clarify their mission, short and long term aims and develop a business plan incorporating ways of being more resilient and gaining income with the aim of recruiting a member of staff and establishing a base.
In addition, the Veterans have supported the Trafford Community Response to Covid by regularly collecting food boxes from the foodbanks and distributing them to the local community hubs during the first lockdown.
What happened as a result?
As a result of the funding received, Trafford Veterans supported 15 Veterans through the allotment project. This is still ongoing, and they are working with Groundwork, a horticultural course is in the pipeline in the future. The craft group continues to be successful, the numbers of people varied each week, though the highest number of people attending was 30, and was adapted to online with packs delivered to people’s homes during the Covid lockdown. The walking football team had 15 people attending. This was a mix of civilian and forces veterans.
During the covid period they have delivered over 2000 Trussell Trust Foodbank boxes to the response hubs. They also delivered 1760 own food boxes, did 1760 doorstep welfare checks and made over 500 buddy check telephone calls throughout 2020.
What difference did this make?
Support to veterans has been adjusted during the covid response to support them in their own homes. Plans to establish a base for the organisation has been put on hold for the time being but the organisation continues to raise its profile and support for Veterans in Trafford through attending community events and activities and supporting their members as resources allow.
Trafford Veterans Manager Claire Wright “It has been a learning curve to set up an organisation from scratch. We have faced many hurdles but found a way over them. The Veterans are a community which go unrecognised in the community. Thanks to the funding from Trafford Housing Trust it has helped us to make a difference through activities in Stretford, Sale and Altrincham. These activities will continue once the lockdown is lifted and we are safe to continue.”
In January 2021 Trafford Veterans were awarded a Points of Light award by Boris Johnson, Prime Minister.