It’s Armed Forces Day this Saturday, but we’re here for officers all year round…

This weekend celebrates the contributions made by the British military, including officers.

The OA continues to support the officer community, whether that is helping them to find new careers after leaving the Armed Forces or access welfare support when needed.

Richard Sanders is a former Major in the Royal Logistic Corps the OA Employment Team supported. He had a one-to-one career consultation in March with Lisa Jones, an OA Career Consultant who also previously served as an Army officer, which helped him to be job ready and successfully apply for a new role.

Richard said: “I want to thank you and the OA for the invaluable advice, assistance and encouragement. More pointedly I found your personal contribution really helpful, and the CV guidance and LinkedIn/networking tips were crucial to this successful outcome.”

In 2016-17, the OA Employment Team helped 4,782 officers – a 7% increase from the previous year. In addition, 1,757 new job seekers registered with the OA, an increase of 10% from the year before. The support included 780 career consultations, providing impartial and practical advice, and 1,532 people attended OA networking events.

For nearly 100 years we have assisted former officers and their families to help them in challenging personal situations. One beneficiary is Bryony Fuller, who fell down the stairs at home, breaking her back, neck and spinal chord.

Bryony said: “The OA has helped me in so many ways. The main thing to me is that I can stay in my own home. My children, they can come for love, not duty; that is so important.”

Last year, the Benevolence team dealt with 1,107 cases, providing welfare advice, signposting to other organisations and accessing financial support. The OA awarded £1,369,000 in grants. The team authorised 3,766 financial transactions paid to beneficiaries, charities and suppliers.

Grants are awarded to beneficiaries needing financial support, which can be one-off or regular payments, and quite wide-ranging, depending on the person’s needs. Regular grants can go towards the general cost of living, as well as financing care support. Our one-off payments have covered many costs, including car repairs, funeral costs, rent arrears and white goods. Last year we awarded grants to 668 people, of whom 118 live overseas in 27 different countries.

Read more about how we support the officer community in our latest Impact Report.