Mentoring Support: Helping to build better connections to support Veterans

March 29, 2022

Mentoring Support: Helping to build better connections to support Veterans

A new evaluation report has explored the benefits of building collaboration between projects that support veterans.

Mentor Support

The Positive Pathways programme has funded 226 grants totalling £11.4M to improve mental health and wellbeing for veterans by providing a broad range of positive activities – By Veterans – for Veterans.

An aim of these veteran-led projects was to encourage veterans to get out and active, ranging from sports, outdoor pursuits and nature-based wellbeing approaches, along with heritage and Arts based pursuits; where there could be clear benefits to mental health and wellbeing.  So far, over 6000 veterans have accessed these projects; with most of the projects still underway; ending later this year.   

Another key aim of the programme was to help veteran led projects connect their work to wider pathways of care; and to ensure that veterans who have more complex needs could be signposted and supported to access other organisations that could help them these specific needs.

Six experienced charities, Adferiad Recovery, Cobseo, Combat Stress Defence Medical Welfare Services, Invictus Games and Walking with the Wounded received significant grants to provide mentoring support to the grant holders running the 226 projects.

The recently published report by the Directory of Social Change explores some of the activities that these mentor organisations undertook; and the impact that this had on the grant funded projects who received support from them.

In the survey; over three-quarters (78.4%) of the respondents perceived that their relationships with otherorganisations had improved following their engagement with the mentoring organisations. Reasonsfor this included increased networking, new collaborative working relationships, and referralsbetween organisations.

The report further highlighted the benefits of networking between organisations, recommending that others exploring mentoring might seek to make it efficient as possible and focus on helping solve problems, generating referral and signposting pathways, and fostering collaborative working relationships across the sector

The overwhelming majority (88.1%) of the respondents felt that the strategic support and guidance improved the ability of their project(s) to achieve their goals. Following their engagement, greater confidence was reported in knowing where to find additional support (73.8%) and how to work in collaboration with other armed forces organisations/charities (71.4%).

The Armed Forces Covenant Fund Trust is evaluating the wider impact of the Positive Pathways programme and the impact that it has had on the veteran community.