GOSPORT BRANCH CHARITIES
The branch will be supporting two charities each year.
Our main charity is our Branch Widows who will continue to be our ongoing primary charity.
The branch will also make a donation once a year to a local charity. This charity will be chosen by the committee from deserving charities from the area local to the Branch in Gosport and the surrounding area and are chosen from options suggested by branch members.
THE CHARITY FOR 2023-2024 IS 'ELSON'S HEROES' BASED AT ELSON JUNIOR SCHOOL IN GOSPORT
Elson Heroes/Service Club is a weekly lunchtime support group for children from Service families. The group currently supports 35 children and their families. The group not only provides specialist support from the adult leader but also important peer support - the children know that they are not alone in the challenges they face and are a great source of comfort to each other. The group gives the children an opportunity to share their experiences and pride with the rest of the school in events such as; our Remembrance assembly to which we invite Service parents, veteran friends from FirstLight Trust and the whole school; and Armed Forces Day when we hold a parade for children in uniforms such as scouts and cadets and invite the veterans to watch. We have built strong links with FirstLight Trust and our intergenerational work has improved the mental health of the children and veterans through having fun, sharing stories and experiences and arts and crafts. This link gives a powerful message that being from a Forces family is being part of a lifelong community. We have built links with HMS Collingwood who visit with serving personnel and run problem solving and team building workshops with service and non service children. The Elson Heroes support reaches out to families with coffee mornings, picnics and information events for Service families, often providing valuable support to the non-serving partner moving to a new area.