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.
You can also find help and support about alcohol misuse through the NHS. They provide alcohol support and can signpost you to other organisations that can help.
If you need help and treatment for drug addiction, you're also able to access NHS care. There's also support for family and friends available.
Groups and activities
Taking part in social groups can help your health and mental wellbeing. Take a look at the events and activities in and around Barnsley for ex-armed forces. Attending these will help you get in touch with other like minded people.
Healthcare - NHS armed forces
After you leave the armed forces your healthcare comes under the NHS. You can take a look at the services offered for veterans on the NHS and details about priority treatment. You can also find out answers to questions you may have.
If you're worried about something in particular, you can find services from the NHS. Remember to let them know you're ex-armed forces. This may help you access services and treatment.
NHS Health Check
The NHS Health Check is for all adults in England aged 40 to 74. It checks your circulatory and vascular health. Find out more about the NHS Health Check.
Veterans and Reserves Mental Health Programme (VRMHP)
The VRMHP provides mental health assessments for veterans and reservists who have concerns about their mental health as a result of service.
Veterans’ Mental Health Transition, Intervention and Liaison Service (TILS)
The Veterans’ Mental Health TILS is a service that supports veterans and their families. It started from the recognition that veterans may find it difficult to access NHS services after their time serving. It aims to reduce the stigma that surrounds mental health by providing more accessible ways into services.
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. This provides a badge so you can park in marked parking spaces closer to the place you're visiting.
If you're disabled and need help with everyday living, contact our adult social care team to discuss your needs on (01226) 773300. Please tell them that you're ex-armed forces when you call.
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 details.
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 online. When you register, tell them that you've served in the forces. This will help them to better understand any health conditions you may have. It'll also make sure they refer you to services for ex-forces if needed.
It's important to give your new GP a copy of your military medical centre paperwork. This will help to make sure that your health records are transferred to your NHS health record.
Support for armed forces families
Keeping Families in Mind is a service funded by the Ministry of Defence for the families of serving and veteran armed forces personnel.
The service offers free, confidential counselling from a qualified therapist.
Support for people with physical injuries
BLESMA: the limbless veterans
BLESMA helps service and ex-service personnel who have suffered life-changing limb loss or use of a limb, an eye or loss of sight.
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 can transform a physical injury, but it's a complicated process to treat the emotional trauma and related lifelong problems.
You can contact BLESMA on 0208 590 1124.
Blind Veterans UK
Blind Veterans UK believe that no one who has served our country should battle blindness alone. They provide vision impaired armed forces and national service veterans with the support they need to discover life beyond sight loss.
They help veterans re-learn vital life skills and provide them with the tools they need to be independent in their own homes. They offer learning, training and more, and provide long-term nursing, residential and respite care.
You can contact them by phone on 020 7723 5021.
Help for Heroes
Help for Heroes provides a range of support and services. These are for wounded, injured and sick service and ex-service personnel (regular and reserves) who have suffered illness or injuries.
Help for Heroes does this through services such as:
- recovery centres in Tidworth (Wiltshire), Catterick, Colchester and Plymouth
- the Hidden Wounds service (mental health support)
- welfare support
- grants to individuals and other charitable agencies
- fellowships of ‘Band of Brothers’ and ‘Band of Sisters’
You can contact Help for Heroes on 0845 6731760.
Support for people with mental health issues
Talking about mental health and wellbeing is the first step towards suicide prevention. Talking about mental health doesn't have to be scary and can have a big impact on someone's life. Find out more about our Alright Pal campaign.
Togetherall is an online mental health support service for veterans and those currently serving, their families and carers. 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.
CALM – Campaign Against Living Miserably
CALM is a charity that works to help prevent male suicide in the UK. It offers support to men of any age, who are down or in crisis. Support is offered through their helpline and website.
You can contact CALM by calling 0800 585 858.
Combat Stress is the UK's leading veterans' mental health charity. It's helped more than 4400 veterans to rebuild their lives. It looks after veterans with a wide range of mental health issues and offers two 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 free of charge and are proven to work.
You can contact Combat Stress on 0800 138 1619 or 01372 587000.
Help for Heroes – Hidden Wounds
Hidden Wounds can help veterans and armed forces' families living with anxiety, depression, stress, anger or alcohol. It's here to help people find ways of dealing with frustration and to help them to start enjoying everyday life again.
Free support is delivered by phone, Skype or face to face.
You can contact the Hidden Wounds service by calling 0845 6731760.
Mind supports people gain good mental health.
Keeping Families in Mind is a service funded by the Ministry of Defence. It's designed to provide support to families who are struggling with the demands of military life.
NHS mental health services
NHS mental health services include IAPT (improving access to psychological therapies), which provide a front line service and access to other mental health support.
The NHS also offer complex mental health treatment for the armed forces community. Find out more about NHS mental health services.
Samaritans is a confidential service to talk to any time you like, in your own way. Their vision is that fewer people die by suicide.
Samaritans work to help with emotional distress and reduce the incidence of suicidal feelings and behaviour. They do this by being available 24 hours a day to provide support for people who are struggling to cope.
You can call Samaritans any time on 116 123
The Veterans’ Mental Health High-Intensity Service (HIS)
The Veterans’ Mental Health HIS provides care and treatment for those who are in a mental health crisis and need urgent help. It works with local mental health services that are already treating a veteran, to improve the outcomes for them.
Referrals can be made to HIS from a GP or other health service.