Posted on: Friday 16 April 2021
April is designated as the Month of the Military Child, which highlights the important role Service children play in the Armed Forces community.
The ‘Month of the Military Child’ is a time to applaud Armed Forces families and their children for the daily sacrifices they make and the challenges they overcome.
In recognition of this, there is a vast amount of support offered to Service children across Torfaen schools (A Service child is identified by schools as a child whose parent, or carer, serves in the regular armed forces, or as a reservist, or has done at any point during the first 25 years of that person’s life).
Recently the council has been awarded £3,500 from Welsh Government, in collaboration with SSCE Cymru, to offer health, wellbeing and resilience-building workshops from the Military veteran organisation Forces Fitness.
This means that every primary class with a Service child will benefit from a 1 hour workshop, and each secondary with Service children will receive up to 3 hours of workshops.
The funding will also enable free supportive resources and materials for schools in Torfaen to support the specific needs and challenges of Service children.
There are currently 25 Service children eligible for support in Torfaen across a total of 17 schools and it is expected that more children qualify. As a result, parents and carers are encouraged to come forward to schools if they have children with any connection to the armed forces.
In addition to this support, Regional School Liaison Officer (RSLO) for Service children, Caitlin Woodland works in collaboration with the 160th (Welsh) Brigade to support Service Children in Education in Wales (SSCE Cymru).
As the RSLO for East Wales, Caitlin works with schools in Torfaen to understand the experiences and needs of Service children and embed activities that will ensure sustainable support systems.
Caitlin said, “We are really excited to be building on the existing fantastic support for Service families in Torfaen by offering increased support for Torfaen schools with Service children.
The Forces Fitness sessions available will be great fun for all children involved, and will inject some fun into their weeks, during what has been a challenging time for all of us, not least of all children.”
Torfaen Council continues to support the local Armed Forces community, including current serving personnel, ex-Military personnel, and their families, through their commitment to the Armed Forces Covenant.
Armed Forces Champion for Torfaen, Cllr Alan Jones said, “The ‘Month of the Military Child’ gives us a chance to reflect on the sacrifices and the challenges Armed Forces families and their children overcome on a daily basis.
I am really pleased to learn that further support is being offered via our school, where Service children will get the chance to experience some new and exciting activities to support their wellbeing and build resilience.”
For more information, please visit www.sscecymru.co.uk