Glasgow's Helping Heroes celebrate 5th birthday on Armed Forces Day
Armed Forces Day marked the 5th birthday of Glasgow’s Helping Heroes, a joint partnership that exists between SSAFA and Glasgow City Council. The GHH team is largely made up of SSAFA trained caseworkers who are experienced in providing support to the military community on issues such as housing, employment, financial and health.
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In the five years since the official launch on Armed Forces Day 2010, GHH have helped Glasgow's veterans, their families and carers with a range of different issues.
By January 2011 the GHH team already needed to upscale to a larger office. This meant GHH could bring in a full- time housing advisor, and have rooms available for external organisations such as CRISIS counselling and Citizens Advice Bureau to see clients one-to-one.
2012 saw GHH win some prestigious awards for their work supporting veterans and their families in Glasgow. Firstly the Glasgow City Council’s Flourish Award for Health and Wellbeing in June, closely followed by the Herald Society's Partnership award in November.
In 2013, Scottish footballer Steven Naismith supported the GHH initiative to provide service leavers with starter packs for their new homes, and support them to find training and employment:
Steven said, "I have a deep and genuine admiration for those working to create real jobs, training, housing and social and economic opportunities for men and women who deserve our eternal respect, support and appreciation."
GHH took another step forward in assisting veterans with Mental Health issues in 2014. The Glasgow Veterans United pilot - was a 16 week well-being course aimed at helping veterans transition into civillian life and get back on track after leaving the Forces. The pilot was a great success with many of the participants moving into employment or further education.
Glasgow Veteran United was one of the factors that counted towards GHH successfully winning the Mental Health category at the 2014 Military and Civilian Health Partnerships awards.
Over the past five years, Glasgow’s Helping Heroes have assisted almost 1480 clients and continue to reach out to veterans, their family members and carers in Glasgow on a daily basis.