Family Initiatives – supporting families of Veterans

Stand Easy is about to launch a new research period, looking into how best we can also support the families of Veterans. Through our work so far, we’ve observed the following:

  • When a Veteran has mental health issues, the whole family can be hugely challenged, often resulting in the break-up of the family unit. This further impacts the Veteran, resulting in an even more vulnerable state.
  • Veterans are offered a large variety of support mechanisms, but family members are frequently forgotten. There is little, or no, available support for them.

Already in America, research has indicated that if serving personnel have a strong family unit, they are less likely to suffer from, for example, Post Traumatic Stress. This research has resulted in policies being put in place to support the whole family unit.  It’s widely recognised that if Veterans begin to experience PTS, they are more likely to be able to deal with it within a stable and supportive family unit.

We are still catching up in the UK, but there is a long way to go.  

Stand Easy has set up a sub-committee, made up mainly of partners of Veterans with PTS.  We aim to use their experiences to help us find a way of providing appropriate support through the work that we do.  The first meeting is on Monday, 15th October. We are also hoping to confirm the involvement of a Postgraduate researcher.  

We welcome any help available, and are looking for you to get involved.  If you are affected by these issues (adults and children) we would appreciate hearing from you.  Please remember, any contact will be confidential.  

Get in touch with us on e-mail at:  [email protected], or through our social media pages on Facebook (@standeasyproductions) and Twitter (@StandEasyDundee). Send us a direct message through these platforms if you want to remain private.

We look forward to hearing from you!

Stand Easy at Edinburgh Festival with Bravo 22

Stand Easy were busy in Edinburgh last week.

On Wednesday, Alan Cameron and Billy McWilliam attended the play ‘Wired’ at Army at the Fringe. Alan reports, “the play about post traumatic stress was produced and performed by an all female company, and was excellent – well researched and well dramatised. Billy and I were on the panel for a discussion afterwards. Billy was very pleased as he was sat next to Keith Brown (SNP Deputy Leader) who recognised him (and not me!) from a previous visit Keith made to Stand Easy at Macrobert Arts”.

Gary Gray and Richard Caffrey during a break at the Bravo 22 workshop

On Thursday, we took 6 Veterans and 3 members of staff along to a Bravo 22 day. Stand Easy was inspired by Bravo 22, so this was an important day for us to come together with our Southern counterparts.

Thanks to Gary Gray of Poppy Scotland who kindly organised the whole day. We’re also grateful to Erskine House for accommodating a drama workshop for us,  all Bravo 22 cast members (who helped run the workshop) and residents at the Personnel Recovery Centre. They also provided us with an excellent lunch and then we were given tickets to see the performance of ‘Unspoken’ at the (Pleasance).

Bravo 22 cast member Tip Cullen, with 2 of our Veterans, George Holmes and Susan Dunham

By the end of the day we all felt we had known each other for much longer as our experiences were so similar. A really great day!