What is the Armed Forces Covenant?

The Armed Forces Covenant is a promise from the nation that ensures those who serve, or who have served, in the Armed Forces and their families are treated fairly and not disadvantaged by military service.

It helps the Armed Forces Community to achieve basic rights; having a home, starting a new career, educating and looking after children, getting a fair deal, having access to healthcare and accessing financial support they are entitled to.

What does disadvantage look like?

  • Difficulty accessing financial services due to military service, i.e. a loan or mortgage
  • Problems accessing NHS services after being posted to a different location
  • Difficulty accessing school places for your child(ren)
Armed Forces Covenant Logo

How does the Armed Forces Covenant benefit me?

Most of the challenges the Armed Forces community face are within the remit of the Covenant. This doesn’t mean the Covenant can ‘fix’ everything, but it offers a means to ensure disadvantage is not experienced.

Examples of how The Covenant helps families:

  • Reminding your school admissions team or head teacher that Armed Forces children don’t choose to move mid-year and it would be incredibly helpful if they could find a space for that child, class size dependent.

  • Ensuring the continuity of dental care or other healthcare so a patient doesn’t lose their place on the waiting list when they move area.

Examples of how The Covenant helps individuals:

  • Releasing personnel from contracts when they have been tied into a contract which isn’t flexible and is no longer fit for purpose, due to being posted. Such as a mobile phone contract with no coverage in assignment location.

Does the Armed Forces Covenant make a difference?

The MOD is legally bound to produce an Armed Forces Covenant Annual Report, published each December. It details successes from the past year. The Observations section, co-written by the Families Federations, the Royal British Legion and Cobseo, holds to account the commitments made and requests focus in specific areas for the coming year.

See the impact of the Armed Forces Covenant, here.

E-Learning opportunity – The Armed Forces Covenant and Covenant Duty

This e-learning gives an insight into Service life and culture, highlighting the unique obligations and sacrifices made by the Armed Forces community. It has incorporated voices of the Armed Forces community to give their insights. It explains what the Armed Forces Covenant is and about the new Duty.

Go to e-learning >

How does the RAF Families Federation work with the Armed Forces Covenant?

We work closely with Local Authorities, the NHS, MOD, the DfE, other Government departments and the Devolved Administrations to:

  • Raise awareness of the needs of RAF personnel and their families
  • Share best practice
  • Ensue policies are drawn up with Armed Forces lifestyle in minds
  • Support groups making bids to the Covenant Trust

The Armed Forces Covenant on station

All RAF stations have appointed a Covenant ‘Champion’, it is usually a secondary duty held by someone in a welfare post. If you are unsure who your local Covenant Champion is, please get in touch – we have a list!

One of the ways the Covenant Champions can support their station is to identify projects (featured within their Community Needs Analysis report) where funding bids can be made to the Armed Forces Covenant Fund.

Upholding the Armed Forces Covenant should be business as usual for all, whether in a welfare post or not. It is ultimately about recognising and reducing disadvantage and there has been a huge number of positive projects delivered to enhance and improve the lived experience for all members of our RAF family.

How we can help!

If you feel you are being disadvantaged due to your Service, get in touch and let us review the situation with you.