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10/10/16 00:01

Scottish Veterans Fund

£600,000 boost for veterans projects.

Veterans and ex-service charities are to be supported by £600,000 funding over the next three years, Veterans Secretary Keith Brown will announce.

The Scottish Veterans Fund opens to applicants this autumn and helps a wide range of projects to support veterans, including employability, housing, befriending and wellbeing. The fund includes a three-year £240,000 contribution from Standard Life for projects to assist veteran’s employment.

Established in 2008, the Scottish Veterans Fund has invested more than £830,000 and supported 125 projects that provide advice, help and support to the thousands of veterans leaving the armed forces.

Speaking ahead of the 2016 Armed Forces and Veterans Champions Annual Gathering in Glasgow, Mr Brown said:

“For the past eight years, the Scottish Government’s Scottish Veterans Fund has been a source of help for projects that make a vital difference to people’s lives.

“I am delighted to announce our largest contribution yet, with the fund to be supported by £360,000 Scottish Government money over three years. This will ensure it continues to help small, one-year projects – while for the first time, applicants can bid for two or three year funding for more strategic projects.

“I’m particularly grateful to Standard Life for their commitment, bringing the total available to £600,000 over three years. This investment will enable charities and other organisations to provide even more support to veterans leaving the armed forces and settling in Scotland each year.”

“The fund will open formally for applications later this autumn and we and Standard Life are keen to see a strong set of applications from projects across Scotland.”

Sandy Begbie, Chief People Officer, Standard Life, said:

“Disciplines and skills developed in the forces are highly transferable to business and we can’t afford to waste these talents in our communities. But we recognise that people leaving the armed forces can sometimes find themselves facing barriers when it comes to making an effective transition into civilian life and other careers. We are keenly aware of the challenges and how this talent pool often goes untapped by the business community. The funding we’re announcing today aims to break down these barriers and help more ex-service personnel get the right jobs, benefiting us all.”

Martin Gibson, Chairman of Veterans Scotland said:

The veterans community is delighted with this very welcome ongoing Scottish Government commitment to the now enhanced Scottish Veterans Fund which has been further bolstered by Standard Life’s wish to support those leaving the services and their spouses in securing employment on their return to civilian life across Scotland.