Friday 11th August 2023
A large group of young people, all bereaved of a military parent, attended Scotty’s Little Soldiers’ Adventure Day – funded by the Armed Forces Covenant Fund Trust (AFCFT).
The day provided an opportunity for secondary school aged members of Scotty’s Little Soldiers to participate in fun and challenging military-themed activities whilst making friends, developing life skills and feeling supported as they journey through secondary school and transition into adulthood.
Scotty’s Little Soldiers, a charity dedicated to supporting children and young people (0 to 25 years) who have experienced the death of a parent who served in the British Armed Forces, held the military themed event at Condover Hall in Shropshire. The event was the first event of its kind organised by the charity and part of the Stronger Together project to tack loneliness.
34 of Scotty’s members arrived on the evening of Friday 21 July, were split into teams and watched a special video from star of Channel 4’s ‘SAS: Who Dares Wins’, Mark ‘Billy’ Billingham. The former SAS Soldier told them they would have a series of top-secret missions to complete over the next 24 hours. Afterwards, on their way to the next activity, they were suddenly intercepted by the military police, who pulled up in police car with sirens blaring. The police, who were invited as part of the event, handed over a briefcase with a message containing further instructions. The young people were told they’d take on the missions the following day, so ahead of their challenge, they had the chance to get to know one another around the campfire and talk openly about their experiences of childhood bereavement.
The next morning, the Adventure Day began and Scotty Members, who were in teams alongside young people in the same year group, took on their missions themed around the RAF, Navy, Army, Special Forces and Reservists. These missions were hosted by Commando Joe’s – whose veteran-led programmes are designed to improve the educational outcomes of children and young people – and each mission was introduced by another video from Billy Billingham.
For more information about Scotty’s Little Soldiers, and the services they provide, visit https://www.scottyslittlesoldiers.co.uk/