Staff testimonials

Read messages from a selection of our staff members about the working life at SSAFA.

Staff testimonials

Read messages from a selection of our staff members about the working life at SSAFA.

Fiona Donaldson-Myles, Community Health Manager,
Health and Social Care, Cyprus
Year Joined: 2002

"I applied to work at SSAFA because I wanted to work with the Armed Forces as my husband is ex-Army and my dad ex-RAF and I wanted to support military families overseas. I also wanted to give my children the experience of living in other cultures and widening their horizons.

"I really enjoy working with a dedicated and experienced team of staff who always give 100%. I like the variety of my role and the community spirit. I have been able to develop my knowledge and experience of a wide range of specialisms because we have multi-disciplinary teams here. In the NHS I would have had to stick to one profession."


Jason Winer, Executive Assistant,
Client Services based at Central Office, London
Year Joined: 2018

"What I enjoy most about my role is that my department is so varied from Adoption, Housing, Additional Needs, Forcesline, Glasgow Helping Heroes and our Support Groups.

"This has enabled me to deal directly in assisting families who have suffered so much and in many cases given the ultimate sacrifice for our country. Therefore, what I enjoy most about my role is knowing that you really are able to make a difference for people who selflessly put their lives on the line day in day out."


Sue Chard, Community Midwife,
Health and Social Care, Cyprus
Year Joined: 2017

"I applied to work for SSAFA because I have had an interest in the military for many years. In my role I enjoy the ability to give continuity of care to families as well as seeing the babies I care for grow up and see their parents gain confidence in their new roles. I enjoy supporting families posted overseas - lacking the social networks that they have at home.

"Above all I enjoy spending time with the people. Through SSAFA, I have undertaken the ILS course and have become the BLS instructor for the SSAFA team in Cyprus. I have also gained the skill to teach aqua natal to antenatal and postnatal women."


Laura Galvin, Personal and Family Support Worker
RAF Personal Support and Social Work Service based at RAF St Mawgan, Cornwall
Year Joined: 2015

"My parents relocated to St Mawgan from London when I was at university and I spent many fabulous weeks watching the planes fly from RAF St Mawgan when I was down on holiday. After University, I trained as a teacher in London and moved to Cornwall with my family in 2000 where I spent 11 years as a Headteacher before deciding on a change of direction in 2011.

"Becoming a Personal and Family Support Worker was a sharp learning curve, moving from educational jargon and politics to military speak. However, I quickly got involved and up to speed and the last 4 years have flown by. It is a privilege to support the Armed Forces in this way and I am forever grateful that I followed my gut feeling in applying for the job that I knew nothing about."


Gary Williams, Head of Specialist Services
Volunteer Operations based at Central Office, London
Year Joined: 2015

"After leaving the Army where I served for 27 years I was looking for a new challenge that would give me the sense of purpose I had whilst serving. I started at SSAFA as the Forcesline Manager, which was a great job and very rewarding. My team were also great to work with!

"I am now the Head of Specialist Services where I am responsible for several services and projects that SSAFA run nationally, including Mentoring , VCJS support service, Gurkha Support service and Joining Forces - a project working with Aged veterans and Age UK. SSAFA have given me the opportunity to develop my leadership skills but also to learn new skills such as project management, coaching in the workplace, safer recruitment to name but three.

"I am currently on the CLORE Experienced Leaders course, giving me an opportunity to engage and learn from a range of experienced leaders in both the military and civilian charity sectors. Who knows, maybe I’ll be a SSAFA Director one day!"


Shahbaz Osman, CMS Project Advisor,
Finance based at Central Office, London
Year Joined: 2015

"I applied to work for SSAFA as not having been able to serve the country myself it allowed me to add value to those that have served as well as the volunteers that are supporting them. My current role has given me a lot more of an insight into project management, testing, training and configuration. The logistics in trying to link multiple organisations together on one system has been quite trying, but it has made me now be able to look at problems from multiple perspectives.

"The best thing about working for SSAFA is that both the volunteers and the employees are so passionate about the service we are providing. This drives them to work together as one big family and help each other to succeed."