Welfare and Wellbeing
Welfare and wellbeing services for RAF personnel and families assigned overseas.
Here we summarise the support services that can be accessed by RAF personnel and their families whilst assigned to locations outside of the United Kingdom.
The team can signpost you to other organisations if you are unsure who you should talk to.
MOD and RAF service provision
Overseas social work services
All overseas commands – Core Assets
Core Assets provide a social work service to all overseas commands (with the exception of Brunei and Gibralta).
Brunei – SSAFA
Personal support and social work services in Brunei are provided by SSAFA, they sit outside of the UK contract and therefore the contact details are different.
Address: Chit Chat Community Centre, Tuker Lines, Brunei Garrison, BFPO 11
Mil: 94193 3371
Civ: 00673 3220172
Duty Mobile: 00673 8330224
SSAFA – Gibraltar
The social work provision to British Forces in Gibraltar is through the Joint Social Work Service – which is a hybrid arrangement between the Command, SSAFA and the Naval Service Family and People Support. They provide specialist welfare support.
Mil: 94110 3204
Civ: 00350 2005 3204
Togetherall (formerly Big White Wall) offers free and confidential online mental health and well-being services including self-help programmes, resources and online community support. All service personnel, veterans and their families can access Togetherall for free through their partnership with the Ministry of Defence and Help for Heroes.
HeadFIT for Life
Launched by the Ministry of Defence and The Royal Foundation, this service is made up of a series of tools or activities that can be easily incorporated into anyone’s day-to-day routine. The resources are designed for serving personnel, but are available to anyone through the website. The HeadFIT tools are designed to improve your drive, confidence and mood, and reduce stress.
Charitable welfare and wellbeing provision
The RAF Benevolent Fund
The RAF Benevolent Fund (RAFBF)offers a wide range of welfare, wellbeing and mental health services that can be accessed remotely. ‘The RAF Family’ includes serving RAF personnel, their partners, or those who have previously served.
Call: 0300 102 1919 08:00-22:00 Monday-Friday (calls charged at standard rate)
Request a call back: complete the online form
Web chat: Start an online chat Monday-Friday 09:00-16:30
The RAFBF is able to provide financial assistance to the RAF Family. For requests of £500 or less the Unit Chief Clerk should be approached. Where the need is greater than £500, as well as approaching the Chief Clerk the on base SSAFA Social Worker should also be contacted.
Advice and advocacy
The RAFBF also offers an advice and advocacy service. Serving Personnel and their families are able to make direct contact for benefits advice, housing advice and advice on Social Services/the NHS/care.
Call: 0300 102 1919
Listening and counselling service
The Listening and Counselling Service provides a confidential emotional support service to those in the RAF Family, who may be affected by various mental wellbeing difficulties. This is available to RAF personnel (including Reservists) and their dependent family members. Support is available for a range of difficulties, including: anxiety and/or depression, bereavement and loneliness and isolation. The service has now been extended to children aged 11 to 18; parental consent will be required for children aged 13 and under.
Call: 0300 222 5703 Mon – Thur 9.30 – 16.30, Fri 9.30 – 16.00
24-hour emotional support helpline
The RAFBF has launched a 24 hour emotional support helpline in partnership with Vita Health Group. This service is available to all adult members of the RAF Family who can call the helpline at any time, day or night, to get support from a trained counsellor.
Call: 0300 222 5703 (calls charged at local rate)
Online wellbeing support
Online wellbeing support is offered through access to the Vita Health portal, including support tools, articles, podcasts and videos. Topics covered include stress management, debt advice, nutrition, tips for better sleep, and building resilience. More information is available on the RAFBF’s ‘Online wellbeing support’ page. Members of the RAF Family can request access through this form.
Online mindfulness training
Mindfulness training is available through membership to Headspace – either through an app or online. Mindfulness has been shown to have a positive impact on stress, anxiety, sleep and productivity. Headspace offers convenient 10-minute daily sessions and membership is now offered free to those currently serving in the RAF and their partners. Apply for funded membership.
The RAFBF also offers specialist support for situations such as bereavement, and relationship difficulties, as well as workshops for partners / spouses to aid with enhancing wellbeing, all of which can be accessed online or by telephone.
The RAF Association overseas support
The RAF Association has a dedicated overseas welfare team that offers support and guidance whether you need someone to talk to, help finding financial support or something else entirely.
They can help you to identify a solution, regardless of whether you are currently serving, or you’re a veteran or a family member.
Phone: 0800 018 2361
Online: Contact form
The RAFA caseworkers deliver welfare support to members of the RAF Community. It could be to support an injured airman fighting to get back on his feet or an elderly veteran who doesn’t know where to turn.
Befrienders provide telephone call’s offering friendship to alleviating loneliness and isolation. Contact 0800 018 2361 or complete an online enquiry form.
Other support options available
Call: 0800 731 4880
Web chat: Start an online chat 09:00-17:30, Monday to Friday
Combat Stress 24-hour mental health helpline
Call: 0800 323 4444
The Royal British Legion
Call: 0808 802 8080
Web chat: Start an online chat 08:00-20:00, 7 days a week