The RAF Benevolent Fund is there side by side with the RAF, whenever times are tough. In this guest blog, one serviceman tells his story of support and how the Fund stepped in to make a difference when life changed.
When my wife and I separated, the Fund helped with a grant towards the deposit on a rented property for my wife and our children. Our interest was in providing the best for our children, but in pooling our money we couldn't provide the necessary funds to rent a big enough property, the grant helped us make up the difference and provide a few additional home comforts to help with the children contacting my wife and I when they are with the other parent.
Without this grant, my wife and children would not have been able to remain in a community they had put down roots in and had already established a strong support network, my wife would have had to move somewhere less preferable to live with extended family, making my visits to the children more difficult.
As well as this grant, the Fund supported us with the cost of childcare for our three children, allowing my wife to return to full-time education. She had decided to take this step to rebuild her confidence and reduce her reliance on benefits, but the costs of the childcare were prohibitive, despite combining our income to cover it.
A caseworker visited my wife at a time that was convenient to her, in her house and completed an application form for funding from the RAF Benevolent Fund and several other organisations to ensure she and the children got as much support as they needed. My wife has just finished her first year at university and is able to properly fund our children to undertake additional extracurricular activities to support their development.
We are ever-thankful to the RAF Benevolent Fund for supporting our family at a time when financial pressures were high, and as a direct result both my wife and children have a much brighter future.