3 December 2021 (Edition - Issue 44)

Employment, Training & Transition Support

Take control of your career


We’re here to support Scotland’s adults in the world of work. We can help you plan and manage all aspects of your career – from finding and applying for a job, to reskilling and changing your career path completely. No matter where you are in your journey, we’re here for you.

Take control of your career | My World of Work

How To Translate Your Military Skills & Experience into Civvy Language


You will have acquired a diverse and well-developed set of hard and soft skills from your service in the Armed Forces. From discipline and leadership to adaptability, excellent communication skills and the ability to get things done, you’ll possess many qualities that will be highly transferable to Civvy Street.

However, although you might have lots to offer, it can be difficult for employers to grasp the value of your military experiences and skills, and understand how they will apply to their business. So, it’s crucial that you take the time to ‘translate’ your skills, qualifications, military job titles and any military-specific terms into “civvy speak” so that employers can understand a bit more about you,what you have achieved and how you will add value. 


Education Support

Skills Development Scotland national webinar to support parents and carers with S2/S3 option choices

Skills Development Scotland (SDS) is delivering a nationwide webinar to support parents and carers with S2/S3 option choices.  The webinar is on Wednesday 1st December at 6.30pm. 

Parents and carers can find out more about how to support option choice decisions, including the support and resources available from SDS. 

SDS Careers Advisers will be providing advice and there will be opportunities for parents and carers to ask questions during the session.

To attend this webinar please register here:


British veterans with combat injuries at greater risk of cardiovascular disease

British soldiers injured in Afghanistan may have a higher risk of heart disease and stroke, compared to their uninjured colleagues.

These are among the first findings to emerge from a study of more than 1,100 British veterans of the war in Afghanistan, more than half of whom sustained a battlefield injury while serving, such as loss of limb or a gunshot injury.

The ADVANCE study (Armed Services Trauma Rehabilitation Outcome Study) was set up to investigate the long-term physical and mental health outcomes of battlefield casualties from the UK Armed Forces following deployment to Afghanistan between 2003 and 2014. The work is a collaboration between Imperial College London, King’s College London and the Ministry of Defence.

In an analysis of preliminary data, researchers found that in the years since returning home, veterans who sustained combat-related injuries had a significantly increased risk of cardiovascular disease compared to veterans who returned home uninjured. This included higher levels of lipids and sugar in the blood, greater waist circumference, and stiffer arteries.

Their findings are published in the journal Heart and were presented at the recent annual conference of the American Heart Association.

Professor Paul Cullinan, from the National Heart & Lung Institute at Imperial College London, and study lead for Imperial, said:

“It is gratifying to see the first findings from the ADVANCE study published. However, it’s important to remember that these findings are from the baseline data analysis, and we will be following the participants for another 16 years. The long-term impact of these early findings for these veterans are still unknown and will be of major research interest over the course of the study.”


In the first analysis to come from ADVANCE, researchers examined baseline measurements for all participants. They investigated whether battlefield injuries increased the risk of metabolic syndrome – a cluster of risk factors that increases the chance of a cardiovascular event, including abdominal obesity, altered lipids, raised blood pressure and increased blood glucose – as well as arterial stiffness.

The team looked at data from 1,144 male veterans, with an average age of 26 years at the time of their injury/deployment and 34 years at the time of their baseline assessment for the study.

More than half of the men (579) had experienced a traumatic injury, such as loss of limb or gunshot injury, and 565 men returned home injury-free. The injured were far less likely (28%) than the non-injured (80%) participants to be still serving in the military. There was no difference in smoking status, ethnicity or family history of cardiovascular disease between the two groups.

Among all veterans who returned home with physical injuries, 18% had metabolic syndrome, compared to 12% of the men who did not sustain an injury. In a subset analysis of the injured veterans, 21% of those who were severely injured had metabolic syndrome.

Injured men had a higher measure of arterial stiffness, called augmentation index, 17.6% compared to 15.2% in injury-free veterans, which indicates increased stiffness of the heart’s arteries. The augmentation index among the severely injured veterans was even higher at 18.2%.


“The trend is very consistent. In the injured, the triglyceride counts were higher, the HDL (good cholesterol) counts were lower and the injured had a much greater proportion of visceral fat than the non-injured,” said Dr Christopher Boos, consultant cardiologist at University Hospital Dorset and one of the ADVANCE principal investigators. “The injured had a nearly 50% higher hs-CRP value, a marker of vascular inflammation. Although it was still within the normal range, higher is worse.”

The authors highlight that a number of other factors influencing potential cardiovascular risk, such as diet, posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and depression, or chronic pain, have not yet been examined, but that they will be the subject of further research for ADVANCE.

They explain that continued follow up of participants will be crucial to understanding the long-term clinical implications of combat-related injuries.

Dr Boos added:

“Because of the advances in modern medical care, people are surviving battlefield injuries they never would have 50 years ago. As a result of the Iraq and Afghanistan conflicts coming in rapid succession of each other, we have many veterans with combat injuries for which we don’t understand the long-term psychological and cardiovascular outcomes. It was important to undertake this study to better understand the long-term psychological and medical outcomes of these individuals.”

‘Association between Combat-Related Traumatic Injury and Cardiovascular Risk’ by Christopher J Boos, et al. is published in Heart. DOI: 10.1136/heartjnl- 2021-320296.

To find out more about the ADVANCE Study visit the study website or follow the study team on TwitterFacebook and LinkedIn.

This was article was first published Imperial News.

Funding & Financial Support

Grants from The Veterans' Foundation

The Veterans’ Foundation continues to provide grants to help veterans, qualified seafarers and dependants, who are in need.  The maximum grant is currently £30K, however, we also provide salary grants, which can amount to £40K spread over two years for salaries, only salaries, to help small and medium-wealth organisations.  The application process for all grants is online here: If you have any queries, please contact

Deadlines for submission from now and through 2022 are as follows: 
  • 28 February
  • 20 May
  • 26 Aug

The Trust’s ‘Sustaining Support’ awards over £1.7million in second round of grants

The Armed Forces Covenant Fund Trust are delighted to announce that ‘Sustaining Support’ has awarded over £1.7million in its second round of grants. These grants will help charities to sustain activities and services that people from Armed Forces communities use and value.

Two Funding Tracks, Core and Project 

There were two funding tracks in the Sustaining Support programme. Organisations could only pick one track, either a project funding or the core funding track and receive one grant award from this programme. Grants of up to £50,000 or up to £100,000 were available and sixty-six organisations have benefitted from Sustaining Support grants.

Back, and stronger together

One charity to receive an award from the Core funding track was the Military Wives Choir, who were awarded £100,000 for the project ‘Back, and stronger together’.

As a small charity, Military Wives Choir, relies on performance opportunities to bring in much needed funding to keep the choirs network thriving. Since the start of the pandemic the charity has lost an estimated 25% of its annual charity income due to cancellation of performances and events. This vital funding from the Trust, will help sustain the Military Wives Choirs Foundation in lieu of normal funding streams.

Melanie Nightingale, Director of Military Wives Choirs Foundation, said this about the grant

We are absolutely delighted to have been awarded this Armed Forces Covenant Fund Trust, Sustaining Support grant, which will enable us to maintain support to our network of over 70 choirs across the UK and overseas.  

“We are incredibly grateful for the ongoing support of AFCFT as we emerge from the effects of the pandemic and look forward to our charity’s 10th anniversary next year.

Vulnerable Veterans

From the project funding track, Erskine were awarded £99,959 for their project ‘Social Support for Vulnerable Veterans’ and Gareth Toner – Trusts and Foundations Manager, Erskine, had this to say about the award…

Erskine is delighted to have received a generous grant from the Sustaining Support programme. This grant of £99,959 will play a vital role in the continuation of Erskine’s Activities Centre which provides support and social engagement for over 120 veterans of all ages. 
I would like to sincerely thank The Armed Forces Covenant Fund Trust for your continued outstanding support which will help our Centre’s veterans enjoy the high quality of life that they all truly deserve.”

Helping Veterans to live fuller lives Outside the Wire

As a successful applicant, The Matthew Project applied for a Sustaining Support grant under the project track. They will use this awarded grant of £73,932 to continue to support Veterans in Suffolk and Essex through their project ‘Outside the Wire: Suffolk/Essex’.

Wayne Copsey Service Manager/Recovery Practitioner said this about the award.

“Receiving the Sustaining Support grant will enable the Outside the Wire practitioners to continue to provide much needed support to our most vulnerable veterans who are having issues with substance misuse and/or PTSD. Without the support our project has received from the Armed Forces Covenant Fund Trust, we would not have been able to continue our work in all the areas we cover, which would result in many veterans ending up disengaging and not getting the help they need”

Find out more

To read more on this story, visit our website 

To view the full list of grants


As part of an ongoing project, our volunteers at Housing Options Scotland are researching information about each of the different local authority areas in Scotland. This information is to support you as you move property, perhaps into a new area for the first time. Links to the different guides are found below and to the left. We hope they prove useful to you during your move.

Information and Resources

Welcome to Veterans-Assist Scotland

We recognise that for many Veterans and their families, some aspects of life after leaving the Services can be challenging.  With numerous Veterans’ organisations in Scotland, we understand that it can be frustrating to find just the right person to help with a problem.  And we know that whether you have been “in” for 3 years or 30 years, or “out” for 6 weeks or 6 years, problems will arise that could use some help.

Veterans Assist Scotland

The Veterans Assist Scotland Website has a wide range of information and advice available including the details for the various Armed Forces and Veterans Champions.

Veterans Assist Scotland (

Veterans Assist Scotland - looks to signpost and connect the Veterans' Community including their families, with the organisations and services best placed to help with information, advice and support that they may need from across Scotland.




Veterans Scotland Information Booklet

The latest copy of the information booklet is available via the link below:

News and Other Updates

Forces in Mind Trust Research Centre Conference

FiMT RC Research Conference: 24 March at Church House in Westminster

The third Forces in Mind Trust Research Centre (FiMT RC) Conference will focus on “Research from the Four Nations (England, Scotland, Wales & Northern Ireland)”.  Speakers will include a range of experts bringing together policy, research and the ‘lived experience’ to provide unique and rounded perspectives on significant issues of interest. We look forward to welcoming you to this special opportunity to network with others from different sectors working in the field, including academia, the charity sector, military and government.

For further details and to book tickets, please see: FiMT Research Centre Conference 2022: Research from the Four Nations (England, Scotland, Wales & Northern Ireland) – Veterans & Families Research Hub (

Falklands 40th commemorated in Scotland

Legion Scotland are currently gathering information on all proposed or planned events in Scotland for 2022 to mark the Falklands 40th Anniversary.  This will allow us to create an overview of activities between April to June which can be used as a directory for those who want to attend events in their local area. This is also an opportunity to bring key stakeholders together for the delivery of a national event if there was sufficient interest and support.
If you have information to share or wish to be involved the planning of a national event to commemorate the anniversary, please contact us on

BBC Falklands Documentary

Award-winning production company, The Garden is making a 90-min Falklands War documentary for the BBC, focusing on the experiences and first-hand accounts of those who were there. It will also explore how veterans have made sense of those experiences in the 40 years since.

The filmmakers would like to speak to anyone who is willing to chat – whether or not they want to be part of the film. All conversations will greatly assist with the research and can be held in confidence. Please contact the Producer

The Falklands 40th Anniversary Events

The South Atlantic Medal (1982) is the official name of the medal awarded to almost 30,000 service men and women – and civilians – who took part in the campaign to liberate the Falkland Islands in 1982.

Further information about SAMA82 is available on their website

Additional information in relation to the various events that are being planned for the 40th Anniversary are also available on the SAMA82 website here.

New podcast tells the remarkable story of the Guinea Pig Club

A new podcast has launched exploring the history and legacy of the Guinea Pig Club, a group of airmen who suffered life-changing burns and injuries during the Second World War. The three-part mini-series has been created by the RAF Benevolent Fund to celebrate the 80th anniversary of the Club and to ensure its legacy lives on.

Originally founded as a drinking club, the Guinea Pig Club took its name from the pioneering surgery they underwent at the Queen Victoria Hospital in East Grinstead under Sir Archibald McIndoe. McIndoe’s hospital became renowned around the world and his techniques went on to inspire modern plastic surgery. Crucially, McIndoe focused on healing not only patients’ physical scars, but their emotional wellbeing too. Today, there are only six members of the Club still with us.

In the first episode of the mini-series, historian Victoria Taylor explores the story of the Club and hears first-hand accounts from those who set it up. She interviews Andrew Perry, the son of Jack Perry, the youngest member of the Guinea Pig Club. Jack suffered 80 per cent burns to his hands, face, and ears when his Halifax bomber exploded.

Andrew said:

“The camaraderie of the Guinea Pig Club was a huge help for my dad. McIndoe gave his patients the necessary mental tools to deal with their injuries, which had an enormous impact on them psychologically. And thanks to that positive attitude, the Guinea Pigs were much better equipped to deal with their situations and go on to live fulfilling lives.”

Victoria also speaks to Dr Emily Mayhew, a military medical historian specialising in the study of severe casualty, its infliction, treatment, and long-term outcomes in in 20th- and 21st-century warfare.

Emily added:

“If you want to know how to treat military veterans who are dealing with the lifetime consequences of injuries sustained during warfare, then all the answers to your questions are right there in the history of the Guinea Pig Club.”

The Guinea Pig Club mini-series is the RAF Benevolent Fund’s third series of its All Stations podcast and can be listened to at, on Apple and Google Podcasts, Spotify, or your preferred podcast app.

The RAF Benevolent Fund is proud to have supported the Guinea Pig Club and many of its members over the years and continues to support some members today.

Join the Dambusters Ride in 2022

In summer 2021, the RAF Benevolent Fund launched the Dambusters Ride, a cycle challenge celebrating the centenary of George ‘Johnny’ Johnson DFM, the last surviving member of Operation Chastise, also known as the Dambusters raid. The Dambusters Ride will return in 2022 to honour those who risked their lives in the raid, and the Fund is encouraging its supporters to register for next year’s ride.

The Dambusters were members of the RAF’s 617 Squadron who were assembled in March 1943 to bomb three dams in Germany’s Ruhr Valley. The raid, which took place on the night of May 16-17, involved 133 aircrew flying 19 specially adapted Lancaster bombers.

The Dambusters Ride will take place as both a physical and virtual challenge next year. The physical Heritage Ride will take place on Saturday 14 May 2022 with a 60-mile route and a 100-mile route starting finishing at the Petwood Hotel in Woodhall Spa, Lincolnshire, the home of the Dambusters. Riders can also participate in the event virtually by completing the 60- or 100-mile distance anywhere in the world over the weekend of 7-8 May 2022.

Lisa Hunt, Regional Fundraiser at the RAF Benevolent Fund, said:

“The 2021 Dambusters Ride was an enormous success, raising more than £150,000 for the Fund. We want next year’s event to be even bigger, so we’re calling on our supporters and any eager cyclists to join the 2022 challenge. If you’re unable to make it to Lincolnshire for the main event on Saturday 14 May, please consider signing up for the virtual ride, which will allow you to complete your miles in any other location over the course of the weekend.”  

For more information and to register for the ride, please visit

Johnny Johnson said:

“The RAF Benevolent Fund does incredible work supporting RAF veterans and serving personnel and I would like to thank anyone who signs up for this cycle ride. I am grateful to have never needed the support of the Fund but nonetheless I have always known they are there for those less fortunate than I.

“Not only will this event raise vital funds to support RAF personnel, past and present, it will also pay tribute to the brave men of Bomber Command who made the ultimate sacrifice on the Dambusters raid and throughout the Second World War. Their loss must never be forgotten and it is my hope through this event, a new generation will learn about the cost of the freedom they enjoy today.”

The RAF Benevolent Fund provides financial, emotional, and practical assistance to serving and retired RAF personnel and their families. This includes grants to help with financial difficulty, free memberships for Headspace, Airplay youth clubs, and more.


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Welcome to your monthly update from the Royal Navy and Royal Marines Charity.

This month we took time to commemorate those who have lost their lives serving their country. Also in this edition, find out how we support our veterans overseas, the lengths to which our supporters are willing to go to fundraise for us and how you can support us in the run up to Christmas.  
A November to Remember. 
We dedicate November to honouring and remembering all those that have served, both British and Commonwealth soldiers, sailors, airmen and women, their families and their sacrifices.  
A commemorative service was held on Armistice Day on HMS Excellent which gathered together serving personnel, veterans, family and friends for a moment of silence. 
The RNRMC Galley Cookbook  
Galley would make a great Christmas present for anyone who has a connection to the Royal Navy or for those who simply enjoy entertaining and cooking restaurant-quality food. 
Featuring recipes from 20 professional chefs - all with a connection to the Royal Navy - who have shared their recipes and career journeys. 
Order today and get 15% off your purchase. 
Order Now
Get your Christmas cards today.
Click here to shop.
This Christmas, let's do something big together. 
Join us on Giving Tuesday (30th November), and in the weeks leading up to Christmas – a time where hundreds of millions of people are inspired to give, collaborate and celebrate generosity. Together, we can reach this important goal and continue to be there for our Naval family.  Keep your eyes peeled for next week’s email telling you how you can get involved. 
Join us at our 78th AGM!

SCVO members and supporters are warmly invited to join us at our online Annual General Meeting on Tuesday 7 December to reflect on the past year and hear about SCVO's work, successes and challenges. Book your place now - registrations close on Monday 6 December! As there are currently two vacancies on our Board, members also have the opportunity to vote for their two preferred candidates to become SCVO Trustees - an email with details on how to vote has been sent out to all member contacts. 

Sector news & updates
The November edition of Third Force News is available to read online - remember, members and supporters of SCVO just have to set up a user account to access the full TFN archive, TFN app and exclusive content.

This year SCVO is delighted to be sponsoring the IoD Third Sector Awards and the finalists have been announced! Find out more about the shortlist and how to attend on the night.

World Aids Day takes place on 1 December each year to provide an opportunity for people to unite in the fight against HIV, to show support for people living with HIV and to commemorate those who have died from an AIDS-related illness.
Running your organisation

We've been looking at ways to support the voluntary sector in the transition to net zero - research carried out in early 2021 shows that many non-environmental voluntary sector organisations want to do more but don't know where to begin - if this sounds familiar, take a look at our website for some useful resources to get you started.

In Salesforce's latest e:book, the team highlights four Non-profit Trailblazers who are paving the way to impact across a range of areas, and how they're using Salesforce technology to achieve their mission goals. Download it now!

Did you know that we provide affordable shared workspace, IT support options, payroll services and HR support? If you're thinking about changing how/where you work, find out more.

Governance & leadership

Our Trustee Network in partnership with abrdn Capital Limited provides information and news on relevant topics, webinars, e-learning modules and our new Digital Good Governance Check-up, to support members of boards and committees. Sign up now for our next Good Governance event on the importance of evaluation and reporting.


The deadline for applications to our Digital Senior Leaders Programme is 13 December! If you're a voluntary sector chief executive looking to digitally evolve your organisation, find out more & apply now (SCVO member discount applies!). 
The final application round for the Connecting Scotland programme closes on 12 December - you can apply now for up to ten devices and connectivity to support the people you work with! Find out more in David McNeill's latest blog or apply direct on the Connecting Scotland website (we've collated some of our success stories - check out our YouTube clip for inspiration!).

Policy & influencing

Evaluation Support Scotland - in partnership with SCVO, COSLA and Scottish Government - is supporting a cohort of voluntary sector organisations to evaluate and learn about the impact of their partnerships with statutory organisations, and will use learning to influence positive partnership in the future. Find out more Working Together Better.

SCVO has commissioned thought leaders from all sectors to contribute articles on the subject of the voluntary sector in the economy, to encourage debate and help us build our knowledge and understanding to inform our policy work in this area. If you would like to comment or contribute, please get in touch

You can find our latest policy briefings, consultation responses and research findings on our website, and read the latest blogs from our policy team. Are you a member of our Policy Network? Sign up on our website.

HR, employment & jobs
The Government has announced a short extension to the Kickstart Scheme, allowing employers to apply to create an opportunity up until 17 December 2021, and for recruitment to take place up until the end of March 2022. As a Kickstart Gateway, SCVO can accept employer registrations for the scheme up until 30 November - find out more about how to get involved to support young jobseekers across Scotland!

Recruiting? Our goodmoves site has over 75,000 unique users a month and provides vacancy listings, information and advice about the voluntary sector as an exciting career option for candidates. 
Events & training
We have lots of great online events coming up:
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Logie Green Road
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Veterans Scotland is a company limited by guarantee, registered in Scotland, SC239808.
Registered as a charity in Scotland, SC033880.

Veterans Scotland are also members of the Cobseo Executive committee.


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