SSAFA veterans club opens in Romford
A SSAFA lunch club is giving isolated older veterans in the community the chance to get together over a cup of tea and enjoy weekly activities.
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The club in Hornchurch has been set up by volunteers from SSAFA’s London North East Branch and aims to give veterans, their partners and carers the opportunity to get out and about, meet new people, share stories and learn new things. It meets every Wednesday lunchtime at The Royal British Legion in Hornchurch from 12-2pm and includes a sandwich lunch followed by talks and entertainments. It is open to Armed Forces veterans of all ages with volunteers providing transport for those who need it. The club opened its doors in 2016 and now has more than 20 regular members. Activities so far have included seated aerobics, an antiques memorabilia quiz, a talk from Blesma and musical entertainment.
Paula Colby, Branch Secretary of SSAFA London North East, said: “We’re really pleased the lunch club has been such a success. It’s a great way of bringing the older members of our community together once a week. New members are always welcome - the more the merrier! If you or someone you know would benefit from attending or have a few spare hours to help volunteer on a Wednesday please get in touch.”
The Branch is now looking to set up a gardening project for younger veterans in the area to support the increasing number dealing with loneliness, isolation and homelessness. Paula added: “We want to bring people together, show them that we are aware of the problem and see what can be done to help.”
Veterans in Romford also benefit from a drop in surgery at the library run by SSAFA volunteer Ian Selby from 9.30am-1pm on the first and third Tuesday or every month.
The Veterans Lunch Club is sponsored by SSAFA with an an
nual subscription of £7.50 per person. For further information call 01708 755060 or email London.NE@ssafa.org.uk