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RAF Benevolent Fund awards grant to boost veteran employability

The RAF Benevolent Fund has awarded a grant to Launchpad, the veterans' homeless charity, to provide care for RAF veterans living in Newcastle.

Launchpad applied for £7,500 through the RAF Benevolent Fund to continue to provide accommodation and support with the assistance of specialist providers at their Avondale House centre in Byker. Their services offer veterans a more stable, smooth transition into civilian life from military living.

Avondale House

Pete Ashcroft, Welfare Projects Manager for the RAF Benevolent Fund, said: "Avondale House provides invaluable support for RAF veterans living in the Newcastle area and struggling with the transition from service to civilian life.

"As the RAF Benevolent Fund marks its centenary year, we are launching a campaign to reach even more RAF veterans in need who may not know they are eligible for support. Working with charities like Launchpad enables the Fund to provide that support in all areas of the country."

Phil Thompson, Manager of Avondale House, said: "The charity [Launchpad] costs £650,000 per year or £5,400 per veteran to run so we rely on income in the way of grants and contributions from businesses and individuals that fundraise and donate to help us to deliver the service we do.

"Here at Avondale House in Byker, we have 32 flats with 100% occupancy levels so we are very grateful and acknowledge the grant that was provided by the RAF Benevolent Fund to help our RAF veterans.

"The grant contributes towards the running costs and for our staff to provide targeted support each veteran needs to become independent and the veterans very much appreciated the generous support the RAF Benevolent Fund provided them."

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