Taking care of those who have taken care of us. There are a range of services and support to help with your health and wellbeing.
Alcohol and substance misuse
Barnsley Recovery Steps can help you to recover from and be free from drug and alcohol dependency.
Groups and activities
Attending social groups can help your health and wellbeing. You can take a look at the events and activities taking place in and around Barnsley for ex armed forces to help get you in touch with like minded people.
Healthcare - NHS armed forces
When you leave the army, your healthcare is the responsibility of the NHS. You can take a look at the different services that are offered for veterans on the NHS and information about priority treatment. You can also find out the answers to questions you may have.
If you're worried about something in particular, you can take a look to find services within the NHS.
Remember to let them know you're ex-armed forces as this may help you access services and treatment.
Hallcross offer health checks to all adults aged 40 to 74. The NHS will check your circulatory and vascular health and what your risk of getting a disabling vascular disease is. They are willing to attend events, established meetings and groups to offer health checks.
Find out more about NHS health checks or view their upcoming health check events in Barnsley and Doncaster.
Veterans and Reserves Mental Health Programme
The Veterans and Reserves Mental Health Programme (VRMHP) provides mental health assessments for veterans and reservists who have concerns about their mental health as a result of service.
If you've served in the UK forces and now have hearing loss, tinnitus or both, you may be able to get help to access the Royal British Legion's veterans hearing fund.
You can call 0333 455 9116 or visit veterans hearing support to find out more.
Help if you're disabled
You may qualify for reduced price travel with a disabled person's travel pass or disabled person's railcard, you may also want to look at the Blue Badge scheme, which provides a badge so you can park in marked parking spaces closer to the place you're visiting.
You can also find out about any financial help you may be able to get.
You can take a look at our disabilities and sensory impairment section to get more information.
Register with a doctor and dentist
You’ll need to register with a GP and dentist close to where you live. You can search to find a GP and find a dentist. Once you’ve found one close to you, you can give them a call to register and book an appointment. Remember to tell them that you've served as this will help your GP to better understand any health conditions and refer you if appropriate to dedicated services for ex-forces.
It's important to give your new GP a copy of your military medical centre paperwork. This will help to make sure that your military health records are transferred to your NHS health record.
Support for people with physical injuries
BLESMA: the limbless veterans
BLESMA is dedicated to helping service and ex-servicemen and women who have suffered life-changing limb loss or use of a limb, an eye or loss of sight. BLESMA supports these men and women in their communities throughout the UK.
BLESMA works for members when the conflicts that have affected their lives are no longer the focal point in the nation's media. Modern medicine transforms the physical injury, but it's a complicated process to treat the emotional trauma and related lifelong problems.
Telephone: 0208 590 1124
Blind Veterans UK
Blind Veterans UK believe that no one who has served our country should battle blindness alone. Blind Veterans UK provide vision impaired armed forces and national service veterans with the person-centred services and tailored support they need to discover life beyond sight loss.
Blind Veterans UK's work ranges from helping veterans re-learn vital life skills and providing them with the tools they need to be independent in their own homes, to offering new learning, training and recreation opportunities and providing long-term nursing, residential and respite care.
Telephone: 020 7723 5021
Help for Heroes
Help for Heroes provides a range of support and services for wounded, injured and sick service (regular and reserves) and ex-service personnel who have suffered illness or injuries in serving the nation. Help for Heroes does this through services such as:
- recovery centres in Tidworth (Wiltshire), Catterick, Colchester and Plymouth
- the Hidden Wounds service (psychological wounds)
- welfare support
- grants to individuals and other charitable agencies
- fellowships of ‘Band of Brothers’ and ‘Band of Sisters’
Telephone: 0845 6731760
Support for people with mental health issues
Starting a conversation about mental health and wellbeing is the first step towards suicide prevention. Talking about mental health doesn't have to be scary and can actually have a massive impact on someones life. Find out more about our Alright Pal campaign.
Big White Wall
The Big White Wall is an online mental health support service for veterans and those currently serving, their families and carers, as well as other communities. It’s an online support group which aims to reduce the stigma of mental ill health.
It's free and anonymous for service and ex-service personnel. All they need to do is register.
CALM – The Campaign Against Living Miserably
The Campaign Against Living Miserably, or CALM, is a registered charity, which exists to prevent male suicide in the UK. It offers support to men of any age, who are down or in crisis, through their helpline and website.
Telephone: 0800 585 858
Combat Stress is the UK's leading veterans' mental health charity. It currently helps more than 4,400 veterans to rebuild their lives. It looks after veterans with a wide range of mental health issues, offering two integrated services:
- short-stay clinical treatment at one of their specialist centres in Ayrshire, Shropshire or Surrey
- community outreach, to bring clinical care and welfare support to veterans in their local areas.
Treatment and support services are always free of charge, and are proven to work.
Telephone: 0800 138 1619 or 01372 587000
Help for Heroes – Hidden Wounds
The Help for Heroes psychological wellbeing service, Hidden Wounds, can help veterans and armed forces families living with anxiety, depression, stress, anger or alcohol. It's here to help individuals find ways of dealing with frustration and to help them to start enjoying everyday life again. Free and confidential support is delivered by psychological wellbeing practitioners (PWPs) by phone, Skype or face to face.
Telephone: 0845 6731760
Committed to supporting people and helping them gain good mental health, MIND offer a wide range of services. You can get in touch with Rotherham and Barnsley MIND for help and advice.
Keeping Families in Mind is run by Sheffield MIND and is funded by the Ministry of Defence. It has been designed to provide support to families who are struggling with the demands of military life, particularly following the deployment of a family member.
NHS mental health services
NHS mental health services are provided throughout England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. These include IAPT (improving access to psychological services), which provide a front line service and access to other mental health services and support. Many areas have developed veteran-specific support mechanisms such as the ‘ex-armed forces' project' provided by Coventry and Warwickshire NHS Partnership Trust.
NHS also offer complex mental health treatment for the armed forces community. Find out more about the NHS's mental health services.
The Samaritans is a confidential service to talk to any time you like, in your own way.
The Samaritans’ vision is that fewer people die by suicide. The Samaritans work to alleviate emotional distress and reduce the incidence of suicidal feelings and suicidal behaviour. They do this by being available 24 hours a day to provide emotional support for people who are struggling to cope, including those who have had thoughts of suicide.
Telephone: 116 123
The Veterans' Mental Health Transition, Intervention and Liaison (TIL) Service (formerly known as London Veterans’ Service LVS) offer free mental health support to ex-serving members. Find out more about the TIL service.