“Dear Parish Clerk,
By way of introduction I am the Welfare Projects Manager for the Royal Air Force Benevolent Fund. Given Norfolk’s proud and historic links to the Royal Air Force you may well have heard of us as the leading welfare charity for those serving and those who have served in the RAF, as well as their families. We provide a range of support from financial assistance, independent living help to emotional and mental wellbeing support. In addition, we recently launched a new Community Connector service to tackle social isolation and loneliness amongst the RAF family across Norfolk (based Downham Market but covering the whole county) – https://www.rafbf.org/news-and-blogs/raf-benevolent-fund-launches-new-community-scheme-help-isolated-raf-veterans
We estimate that there are approx. 42,000 veterans living in Norfolk, a significant number of which will have an RAF connection. Our World War Two and National Service generation are a shrinking demographic and by 2030 we have lost 400,000 of them. It is vital therefore that we reach these individuals now and make them aware of the welfare support available to them. It is for this reason that Fund is about to launch a major reaching out campaign to raise awareness. We know that too often pride and self-reliance holds veterans back from seeking the support available. We are therefore reaching out to their families and friends – we estimate that 1 in 3 people in Norfolk has known someone who has served or is serving in the Royal Air Force – to get these veterans back on our radar.
It is with this urgent need to reach out and raise awareness that I am contacting and visiting Town, Parish and Borough Councils across Norfolk and the Armed Forces Covenant Group at the County level. As the most connected into your local communities, I am hoping that you may be able to play a role in getting these individuals – many of whom will be living in your community – back on our radar. This needn’t be a significant effort; a poster on the parish noticeboard (example attached, happy to send copies in the post) an article in your parish newsletter (press release attached) or a link on your parish council website would be gratefully appreciated. Indeed, if any of your councillors are aware of any RAF veterans who may benefit from our support please ask them to call 0300 102 1919 or direct them to our campaign website at: www.rafbf.org. I can send out a guide to our services for your councillors if it would be useful. I would be happy to talk about this further and if you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact me at this email address or on 020 7307 3356.
Many thanks in anticipation,
Welfare Projects Manager
Royal Air Force Benevolent Fund
67 Portland Place, London, W1B 1AR