Veterans Hearing Fund
Veterans Hearing Fund
December 01, 2015 at 11:33 AM
LIBOR FINES TO SUPPORT VETERANS WITH HEARING LOSS
The Royal British Legion has launched The Veterans Hearing Fund. Managed by the Legion, the new fund will support veterans with hearing loss providing them with equipment and therapies to improve their wellbeing.
The fund addresses concerns which the Legion, a major campaigner for the Armed Forces community, revealed in its hearing loss report Lost Voices. The report called on the Government to provide better support to members of the Armed Forces and veterans with hearing problems.
In line with the Armed Forces Covenant and the principle of ‘no disadvantage’, the fund aims to reduce disadvantage to veterans (both regular and reservist) who have acquired hearing loss during their Service. Using income generated from the Libor fines, the funding – a total of £10 million over 5 years – will be made available from 26 November 2015 via the Legion.
The fund comes as a result of the Legion’s research and campaigning both through its Lost Voices report and 2015 Manifesto which included veterans’ access to hearing aids as a key policy recommendation.
Head of Grants at The Royal British Legion, Daniel Elser, said: “Hearing loss can have a profound effect on career prospects, family relationships, social life and mental health and we know that veterans under the age of 75 are three-and-a-half times more likely than the general population to report problems with their hearing. This funding will enable the provision of vital equipment and courses and we hope address the stigma attached to hearing loss.”
“Whether it’s providing less conspicuous “in the ear” hearing aids, Bluetooth streamers to link hearing aids to household items such as a baby monitor or mobile phone, or a lip-reading course to help a veteran engage more confidently in social situations, it’s all about minimising disadvantage and making everyday life easier. We would encourage any veterans with hearing loss to get in touch to see if we can support them.”
The Veterans Hearing Fund was announced by the Legion at the British Academy of Audiologists’ Annual Conference held in Harrogate (26-27 November).
The programme has been designed in consultation with the Ministry of Defence, National Health Service, Department of Health and representatives from subject matter experts in the medical and Armed Forces charity communities.
To access the fund and for more information visit: http://www.britishlegion.org.uk/get-support/finances/grants/veterans-medical-funds/