Want to learn more about the Armed Forces community?
The Methodist Forces Board is keen to facilitate churches who would like to build links with the Armed Forces. We have contacts and experience that may be helpful to you. It is possible that there may be a Methodist Armed Forces Chaplain stationed nearby with whom we can put you in contact. However, as there is significant movement within the Armed Forces community, developing links requires a concerted and ongoing effort. To explore opportunities, email the Secretary of the Forces Board in the first instance.
Resources to support Methodist churches' work with the Armed Forces community are available here.
Roots, Boots and Wings
This short video gives you an insight into the lived experience of children and young people growing up with parents in the Armed Forces.
Chaplaincy to the Submarine Service
In this article the Revd Mark Mander describes his experiences with the Submarine Service and the inspiration to bring a special children's story book to the families of UK submariners: Underneath It All.
Life in the Armed Forces
The Government published a report into life in the UK Armed Forces in 2020 following a series of consultation events. The report is available here.
Support available to the Armed Forces community
Forcesline is a free and confidential helpline for any member of the Armed Forces community in need and acts as a ‘front door’ to the wider support service offered by SSAFA, the Armed Forces charity. To contact the Forcesline team call 0800 260 6767 (9am – 5pm Mon – Fri) or use the live webchat service at ssafa.org.uk/forcesline
SSAFA provide free resources to promote their support to veterans, serving personnel, cadets, etc. You can order resources at this link.
Royal British Legion provide a helpline on 0808 802 8080 from 8am – 8pm every day. Support is provided to current and former members of the armed services, their families and carers. www.britishlegion.org.uk
Veterans’ Gateway contains a large amount of information, advice and guidance for ex-service personnel - www.veteransgateway.org.uk or call 0808 802 1212 (available 24/7) or text 81212.
Armed Forces families who have children with additional needs can find significant challenges in moving often due to work. Parent Partnership Service is a locally tailored service for parents of children with additional needs. You can find your local service through an internet search.
Mental health support
Combat Stress: www.combatstress.org.uk -
A 24-hour/365 day a year mental health helpline is available on 0800 138 1619 (veterans and their families) or 0800 323 4444 (serving personnel and their families). Text support is available by texting 07537 173683 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Together All (formerly Big White Wall): www.togetherall.com -
An anonymous online support for people experiencing anxiety, depression and other common mental health issues. Free for serving personnel.
Samaritans: www.samaritans.org -
A free, 24-hour helpline, offering confidential support for people experiencing distress or despair. Call 116 123.
Every Mind Matters: www.nhs.uk/oneyou/every-mind-matters/ -
Expert advice and practical tips for looking after mental health and wellbeing.
There is a further, comprehensive, list of support agencies at: www.nhs.uk/conditions/stress-anxiety-depression/mental-health-helplines/