New support service launched in Hartlepool to help former servicemen and woman

The Willows in Raby Road, Hartlepool.
The Willows in Raby Road, Hartlepool.

A new support group is to be launched to offer a range of help and support to ex-servicemen and women in Hartlepool.

Veterans of all ages, irrespective of their length of service, are welcome to attend the group which will meet every Friday from 2.15pm-4.15pm at The Willows in Raby Road, starting on February 1.

The group is aimed at individuals who may be struggling to cope with conditions linked to their service in the armed forces, including Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), or others might just benefit from talking to like-minded people as they make the sometimes stressful transition to civilian life.

It has been set up by HART (Hartlepool Action Recovery Team), Hartlepool Borough Council’s Drug and Alcohol Treatment Support Service, together with Addaction which provides the team with a commissioned clinical service.

Paul Reynolds, Neurological, Biological, Psychological and Sociological (NBPS) Practitioner with HART, said: “I talked to a number of veterans currently accessing our services and they all made it clear that they thought the formation of such a group was a great idea.

“We want to create a welcoming environment where ex-servicemen and women of all ages feel comfortable to talk about the issues affecting them.

“We will take advantage of the expertise within our team to offer a range of services directly to veterans, and we will also signpost them to other organisations that we feel are better placed to help with specific issues.

“For example, we intend to build close links with ex-service organisations such SSAFA and the Royal British Legion which offer a range of specialist services.

“We are looking forward to the launch of the new group and would urge ex-servicemen and women in need of support to come along and find out more about how we can help them.”

For more information about the veterans’ group call HART on (01429) 285000.