The Forces Employment Charity strengthens its team in Scotland

We’re excited to announce that our work in Scotland is now delivered by a team of nine advisors and having obtained new funding we are increasing our delivery to those who need us the most.  

During 2023, the Forces Employment Charity provided career support, training, and employment access to 21,977 people from the entire UK’s Armed Forces community; 1,695 of those being from Scotland. We offer lifelong support and guidance to Service leavers, reservists, veterans, or their families, regardless of their rank or reason for leaving.  Thanks to the Veterans’ Foundation, we are now able to start providing support to veterans in contact with the justice system in Scotland. We are also providing more support to the families (including those bereaved) of Serving personnel and veterans in Scotland. 

Service Leavers in Scotland  

Teaming up with CTP, we offer a dynamic range of programmes and hands-on assistance tailored to each individual’s needs, guiding them through the transition from military to civilian life with confidence. 

Our Employer Relationship Manager works closely with Employers across Scotland, and we work to identify and link suitable job opportunities through to the whole Armed Forces community. Employers are eager to harness the skills and qualifications gained during military service, and we’re here to help showcase the military community’s value. Through partnerships with leading companies, we ensure everyone’s talents are celebrated in the job market.  

Our mission is clear: to empower anyone leaving their single Service to overcome any obstacle and embrace the next chapters with confidence. The Specialist Employment Consultant within our CTP Assist Programme in Scotland also offer personalised and comprehensive assistance. This is for wounded, injured, and sick Service leavers, providing access to job opportunities, tailored support, and practical tools to navigate paths forward. 

Those who leave the Armed Forces early have a designated Early Service Leaver coordinator who is on hand to ensure they are linked in with the correct support from the CTP Future Horizons Programme. Whether they have served for a brief period or faced unforeseen challenges, we’re committed to helping all Early Service Leavers seek out new opportunities in a civilian career. 

Our work with veterans 

Through a thorough self-assessment, our dedicated employment advisors help to identify strengths held, address potential barriers to employment, embrace interests and goals that veterans are looking to achieve in both the short and long term. This enables us to provide specialist employment advice tailored to individual circumstances.  

We realise that employment might not be the only need. Our employment advisors collaborate with a network of military charities to ensure clients are getting the correct specialised support from other organisations, addressing specific challenges such as health concerns, legal issues, debt or housing problems.  

Dedicated employment advisors support veterans in accessing suitable training aligned with their career goals, and identifying relevant programs and available funding options. Reviewing and compelling job applications, including CVs and mastering interview skills is essential for securing employment opportunities.  

We provide professional advice ensuring that a CV is Applicant Tracking System compliant, ensuring clients feel comfortable highlighting relevant experience, and providing detailed interview preparation, tailoring the interview preparation specific to the sector or employer.  

In summary, our specialised support helps veterans navigate the employment market effectively, addressing their unique circumstances and aiding every step, from skills assessment to job applications and networking opportunities. 

Veterans in the justice system – NOVA Scotland 

Veterans who are in contact with the justice system often experience feelings of isolation and some of their challenges include homelessness, debt, physical and mental health issues as well as drug or alcohol misuse. 

NOVA Scotland through Scott Muir (pictured) supports these vulnerable veterans in Scotland. We work collaboratively with Police Scotland, the Scottish Prison Service and Criminal Justice Social Work to offer a holistic, person-centred, approach to help deal with the issues they face.  

We undertake a needs assessment for each individual and support them throughout their journey of change. Our overall aim is to enable veterans to live stable lives and to make a positive contribution to the communities in which they live and work. 

Our knowledge of the support services available in Scotland, both through service charities and other third-sector organisations, enable us to ensure that the veteran gets the most appropriate help with any issues that they may be facing.   

Supporting families in Scotland  

Meresa Lewis (pictured) joins the Families Programme as an advisor. Her lived and professional experience, passion, and connections with military families, bring valuable skills and enhanced support to spouses and partners of Serving personnel and veterans in Scotland. Meresa provides mentoring, personalised career guidance, and practical employment support.  

Meresa said:

I am delighted to join the Forces Employment Charity at such an exciting time. As we launch the families project in Scotland, I am thrilled to be involved in contributing to life-changing support for all members of the Armed Forces community in Scotland. As a member of this community myself, I eagerly embrace the opportunity to empower others to make a lasting difference!”  

Since its launch in 2019, the Families Programme has grown significantly. It has supported 1,844 spouses and partners (including divorced and bereaved) with their employment journey across the UK. We’ve helped our clients achieve successful outcomes linked to our efforts in advocating for this diverse talent pool by raising employer awareness and overcoming reluctance. Through collaborative efforts with our wider teams we work with employers to promote opportunities that align to the requirements of a military lifestyle and beyond. 

The Families Programme is now five strong with highly skilled, dedicated advisors, all of whom are military spouses. Their empathy, compassion, and commitment to ensuring clients reach their full potential set the Families Programme apart in the sector. The Programme’s unwavering dedication, innovative approach, and contribution to promoting diversity and inclusion in the workplace make it a model of excellence in the field.  

Deputy CEO, Chloe Mackay adds: 

“We are very pleased to have been able to strengthen our team in Scotland and be able to provide more, much needed, support for veterans and Armed Forces families at this time when we know the cost-of-living crisis is continuing to cause difficulty and hardship for many” 

More information 

Head to our website to find out about how we help, the events you can join and who to get in touch with for further help and advice. 

To talk to an advisor simply register online, or to working with us as an employer, reach out to us through our employer’s interest form and a member of the team will be in touch with you. 

Want to hear about our programmes, partnerships, events and ways that we could support you?