The Families Strategy – a new 10-year plan recognising the unique nature of military life and setting out support for Service families – has been published. Our RAF Families Federation Director, Maria Lyle was interviewed by Forces TV on behalf of the three Families Federations. Read more here to see what the Families Strategy means to you.
The aim of the Strategy is to deliver lasting, cultural change over the next decade as it brings together innovative policies on health and wellbeing, education and career support. We fully support these ambitions – as well as ensuring that the basics are improved where they need to be, including in vital areas such as accommodation.
Improving access to childcare is one of the main workstreams within the Families Strategy, with Wraparound Childcare pilot sites expanding to include Woolwich and Lincolnshire. This means an additional 500 children are now benefitting from the scheme, bringing the total number of children with access to childcare before and after school to 1,500. We hope to see this scheme fully rolled out this year, and will be advocating for this on behalf of RAF families.
Minister for Defence People and Veterans Leo Docherty MP said:
Armed Forces families are at the heart of the Defence community and play a key role in the protection of the UK at home and abroad. The strategy seeks to offer choice and flexibility to allow personnel to serve their nation and raise a family at the same time.
Launch announcements cover childcare education, healthcare and much more to demonstrate our commitment to being a mode modern and inclusive employer – flexible to the needs of our people.
RAF FF Director, Maria Lyle said:
“The Families Strategy is just the start, and we will be working hard to hold the MOD and RAF to account in getting the basics right – and to see clear actions and improvements coming into place to meet the ambitions highlighted in the document.”
You can watch the news to hear what was said on playback through Forces TV (scroll to 15:20 for the story).
The Families Strategy recognises the exceptional demands placed upon the UK Armed Forces and their families and focuses on health and wellbeing, learning and childcare, developing partners’ careers alongside the Serviceperson and career management sensitive to the needs of the family. It is based on recommendations made in a report by Andrew Selous MP titled “Living in our Shoes: Understanding the needs of UK Armed Forces families” published last year.
Contacting the RAF FF
If you experience any issues or concerns during your life connected to the RAF, about life at home or at work, you can confidentially contact the team through their online form in the first instance.