A word from Collette Musgrave, AFF chief executive…
AS WELL as providing direct support and advice to army families, we work hard to really understand the key
issues that are affecting you. This is so that we can be an ever more effective voice when the army and the MOD are discussing longer-term plans to support service families in maintaining family life.
One of the ways we do this is through our surveys and polls – this gives us a chance to make your lived experience real to those making decisions.
So thank you to everyone who took part in our autumn Big Survey on the Future Accommodation Model (FAM), which is the long-term plan for housing for service families.
We had more than 2,500 responses, and the report (available at aff.org.uk) was sent to key decision makers a few weeks ago.
While many of you welcomed the idea of having more choice in how you live – like having support to live in your own home or being able to rent privately – it was clear that you also felt that you didn’t have the information you needed to really understand those choices. We’ll continue to push for better communication that comes direct to you, and which answers your concerns.
The other message in the survey was that you hugely value the availability of Service Family Accommodation (SFA). It’s a key element of the support structure, and over half of the respondents said that they would consider leaving
the army if it wasn’t available (more on page 35 of the spring Army&You). The high levels of mobility that many
of us have to manage mean that having the guarantee of being provided with a house – while we sort out schools, childcare, new jobs, or continued healthcare for the third time in five years – is invaluable.
While all service families have much in common – and AFF works closely with colleagues in the Naval and
RAF families federations – we’ll continue to highlight the particular challenge that mobility brings for army
families, and the support needed to maintain family life. This edition of Army&You brings some of these issues
around mobility to life, highlighting the challenges you face.