APART from it being a beautiful part of the country, Easingwold in North Yorkshire is also home to the Unit Welfare Course held each month.

Any officer, warrant officer, senior NCO, Regular or Reserves, or civil servant who may provide welfare care for soldiers or families can attend this course. It’s split into two parts – a five-day course as they start in their welfare role, and four to six months later, a two-day session.

Sarah Gilbody, AFF UK’s Regional Manager Central, has been presenting on the course for more than three years. She explained: “AFF presents on the first part of the course. We talk about what we do and how we can support Army families around the world.

“It’s an opportunity to meet people as they embark on their welfare journey and I often see delegates again when I’m out and about in my areas.

“We give details of the local AFF co-ordinators so they all have a point of contact once in post.”

Throughout the week, via presentations and interactive sessions, prospective welfare workers learn about policy, safeguarding, loss and bereavement, housing, the Army Welfare Service and other Service charities. The Mental Health First Aid course is also included.

“They also do a role play with real families, so they can experience different scenarios,” said Sarah.

A sub-unit support officer from Liverpool who recently attended the course said: “I enjoyed taking on board all the brilliant presentations. It was an eye opener.”

If there are any budding actors or actresses in North Yorkshire who would like to help with the role play sessions (expenses paid), email Sarah at rmcentral@aff.org.uk

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