No-one can doubt the importance of community but when you are serving or have come out of the army, social interaction becomes absolutely vital. Being part of the Gunner friend network has a lot of benefits and one of those is the number of community and local branch events that take place throughout the year. These events, which are lifelines for Gunners, help to foster relationships and become crucial support networks for Gunners and veterans at different stages of their lives and careers.
Now, there is a new way of highlighting these key community events on the RA Charities’ new Gunner website. All you have to do is visit http://www.theraa.co.uk/events/community-events and complete four questions and upload a PDF/JPEG with the details of your event. This will then be added to our database and showcased on our website on our events page.
Major Sue Wilkinson, Officer Commanding at AGC CLM Squadron, heads up The Royal Artillery Equestrian Centre on Thorney Island. She says:
“We like to think of ourselves as a sanctuary where anyone from the community can come to take some time out. We are super busy here at the stables with members of the military but also with the local civilian community too and other military charities including Blind Veterans. We’ve had support from The Royal Artillery Charitable Fund (RACF), to brand ourselves, which helps raise the profile of the stables and market ourselves so that people are aware of our events."
“This week, we are holding several days for kids to come and work with the horses, we’ve held our first coffee morning and we have a Spring Event on Sunday where we are expecting around 300 attendees. The more people who know about us, the better. We do some work promoting our events on our Facebook page but to be able to leverage the support of The RA Charities is a fantastic assistance. We will definitely be adding our events to the website in the future to increase footfall and raise awareness of the work we do, and hopefully encourage sponsorship and financial donations as we are a new charity.”
The benefits of the being able to promote community and fundraising events to further afield are both social and financial. For many events, they are raising vital funds and the more support they get, the more money they receive from admission fees etc. But also, with The Royal Artillery Association, there is the key aim of being able to connect Gunners who can share stories, learn from one another and forge new friendships. For some Gunners and in particular veterans, these community events can help soldiers who are struggling with mental health issues and getting used to the transition into civilian life.
Sarah Davies, Admin & Communications Manager at The Royal Artillery Association, adds:
“We know from the feedback that we receive that the personal connections made at local community events, fundraisers and branch socials are really important. We wanted to make it easy for Gunners to find events that they can attend. Sometimes, they are not sure where to look so by adding a section to the main website, we are hoping to help raise awareness and support our important local networks.”
Anyone can publicise an event on the Gunner website. To add an event for inclusion on the website, all you need to do is visit http://www.theraa.co.uk/events/community-events and fill out the form. Our team will do the rest. If you have any questions, contact us on 01980 845233.Regional News, Regimental News, General, Social Media