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Nikki Scott writes about Afghanistan

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It feels only right that I touch on what is happening in Afghanistan. It has stirred up so many different emotions for me and my children and it’s a difficult time for a lot of military families.

I worry about the impact on children and young people who have experienced the death of a parent due to serving in Afghanistan, especially when they see and hear news reports about service personnel ‘dying in vain’.

It is hard to understand and difficult to explain to children. At Scotty’s, we are doing all we can to support our members and we are also assisting parents with how to talk to their children about this tough but important matter.

Nikki, Brooke (year 8) and Tilly (year 2) (50806636)
Nikki, Brooke (year 8) and Tilly (year 2) (50806636)

Personally, I am incredibly proud of the work my husband Lee and all who served in Afghanistan did.

They helped many Afghan people experience freedom and new opportunities over two decades. It made a difference, and that legacy will live on forever, regardless of what is happening now. We are doing all we can to reassure the young people we support that like my own family, they can be so proud of the service their parent has given to their country. I am always grateful that we are able to support bereaved Forces children and young people, but, at the moment, it feels even more vital and I’m so glad our members have a supportive community around them.

n On a lighter note, it’s back to school time! I’ve been busy getting my children ready. Brooke has been really excited about getting back to class, but Kai and Tilly don’t share her enthusiasm!

At Scotty’s we are conscious that starting a new school can be a challenging time, particularly for Forces families who have had to move out of their military accommodation after a death and start a new school with no military community around them. We therefore provide a New School Grant. This means that any Scotty member starting a new school is entitled to a small grant of £50 to help with the cost. We have also been busy behind-the-scenes preparing the Scotty members that are starting High School for the next chapter in their life. Starting High School is a big leap and can be hard for any child, but it’s particularly tough for children who have experienced the death of a parent. It’s one of those key moments in life where their absence is felt more than ever. We’ve sent out transition packs to all the Scotty members that are going into Year 7 with some useful tips and advice, and a reminder we are here to support them.

This month I will be turning 40. Eek! I feel a bit rubbish about it, but I keep reminding myself it’s just a number.

I have set up a birthday fundraiser on Facebook. It’s a good way to let all my family and friends know that they don’t need to buy me a gift, I’d much prefer them to donate to Scotty’s. It’s nice and simple for them to just click on the link and make a donation.

It saves them stressing about what to get me and it means they know their money will be well spent, so hopefully it’s good for everyone.

It certainly means a lot to me to know that bereaved Forces children and young people are getting the support they need. It’s far more important than any present I could be given.

Not that I’ll knock it if I am given a little treat! I have a feeling my kids are planning something!

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