Supporting our Armed Forces is something that Amey staff in our Defence contracts are passionate about. Not only do we carry out maintenance and project work as part of our contractual requirements we also support Service personnel in other ways too!
In 2015 we entered into a partnership with SSAFA, the Armed Forces charity, and made a commitment to raise £250k during the five years of our contracts. Thanks to the generosity of our staff and supply chain partners taking part in various fundraising activities, our total stands at just over £216k which is directed into SSAFA’s mentoring scheme, helping Service leavers and their families as they make the sometimes difficult transition from military to civilian life.
Over the last four years our staff have learnt a lot about SSAFA’s work and with 9% of our workforce having links to the military, many of them have experienced SSAFA’s support themselves. Others, such as Kevin Corbyn, Amey’s Contract Quality Manager in our Housing contract, have been inspired to go that little bit further with Kevin undertaking the journey to become a SSAFA mentor himself.
Kevin said “I served in the RAF for 30 years, finishing as a Flight Sergeant, and then completed four years as a Flight Lieutenant in the Reserves before joining Amey in 2017. I was impressed at the level of support Amey gives to Service personnel and their families and really wanted to ‘give something back’ to the military community that I called home for many years. I saw a post in the staff newsletter about mentoring opportunities and decided to find out more”.
Kevin began his journey in May last year which began with an initial telephone interview before being selected to begin his training which involved a formal application, an interview and a three-day residential training course. The course provided would-be mentors with an understanding of the support and supervision that is available to them. They also learnt about the skills and attitudes that they would need to effectively mentor a SSAFA beneficiary during transition from the military or through a difficult period in life.
Now that Kevin has completed his course he is waiting for SSAFA, who work closely with Unit welfare teams, to find a suitable match. Once found, Kevin will begin to build a relationship with the Service leaver, continuing to receive support from SSAFA throughout the 12 month programme.
Kevin said “My journey to becoming a SSAFA mentor has been tough at times but one I have embraced. When I applied for the course I believed my Service background would be a great help but I’ve found that whilst it means I have knowledge of the Services it is not a pre-requisite for becoming a mentor. Anyone who has a willingness to give up some time and help our military personnel to transition out of the military should apply. I look forward to making a real difference to someone’s life and would definitely encourage others to think about it too.”
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