I&A Veterans Case Study: Roger’s Story
Published on 10 November 2023 09:23 AM
Roger is an 88-year-old RAF Veteran living alone in Worcestershire, who despite being active and largely independent, still struggles with many aspects of daily life due to being partially blind.
“Until I had the visit from Age UK Veterans service, I never knew about any of these things. It’s been marvellous what they have done for me.”
Back in the 1950’s, shortly after the close of the devastating Second World War, Roger was one of many British Service Personnel who were deployed and still operating in the scorching heat of Northern Africa, and more specifically in Suez. This was an unsettling time in Egypt, resulting in the Suez Crisis in 1956 - a conflict that left 14 British Service Personnel dead.
Although he is active and goes out for regular walks, Roger requires his walking sticks when out alone and needs supervision for crossing the roads. Housework is difficult to maintain, and Roger is unable to read most food labels. He’s fortunate to have his son visit him several times a week to prepare meals, but the majority of his extended family lives in the South, which has led to feelings of isolation and loneliness.
After being referred to Age UK Herefordshire and Worcestershire’s Armed Forces Veterans and Carers Service, one of our team made a house visit to establish what we could do to help Roger. After an engaging chat about his RAF service, it was revealed to us that Roger never actually received a medal for his service in the Suez Canal Zone and was also unaware of the HM Armed Forces Veterans Badge. Subsequently, we applied for both of these things on Roger’s behalf and assisted him with the forms that he was previously unable to complete due to his eyesight.
Additionally, we referred Roger to Blind Veterans UK, and helped him with an application for Attendance Allowance, due to his circumstances suggesting a good chance of him being awarded the allowance.
It’s safe to say that after our visit Roger’s quality of life dramatically improved - he received help and visits from Blind Veterans UK after our referral and was able to attend our Veterans Event at Worcestershire County Cricket Club. We helped Roger combat feelings of isolation and loneliness with regular visits and helped him to expand his social connections in the county.
Furthermore, he was awarded a medal for his service in the Suez Canal Zone and his HM Armed Forces Veterans Badge. Speaking of his pride, Roger said:
“To have the General Service Medal and Veterans Badge is fantastic. It feels like recognition for the time I served in the RAF.”
Our work also allowed Roger to receive the higher rate of Attendance Allowance - giving him an extra £92 per week, something which allowed him to pay for a weekly cleaner:
“The extra money I have from the Attendance Allowance is vital for me and allows me to pay for a cleaner who can keep my home tidy”.
When summing up his experience with Age UK Hereford and Worcestershire as a whole, Roger said this:
“Until I had the visit from Age UK Veterans Service, I never knew about any of these things. I never would have had my medal and badge and I wouldn’t have applied for the Attendance Allowance or asked for help with Blind Veterans. I know that I can call them for help and I can’t thank them enough. It’s been marvellous what they have done for me”
Roger’s case is just one of several success stories here at Age UK Herefordshire and Worcestershire, but there are so many people in a similar position who aren’t receiving the help that they are entitled to.
If you’re a Veteran or someone you know is and might benefit from our Armed Forces Veterans and Carers Service, please get in touch via 08000 086077 or email our Referral Hub at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Additionally, visit our hub page for the service for more information of what we can offer and who it is for here: https://bit.ly/3MyT7F0