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Videos offer support for children after turmoil of Afghanistan withdrawal

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In my last column, I talked about the fact that events in Afghanistan have stirred up a lot of emotions for me, my children and a lot of the families supported by Scotty’s Little Soldiers.

We’ve been very focused on ensuring families affected have had the support they need.

I personally felt I needed some advice on how to explain what is happening in Afghanistan to my children, Kai and Brooke.

I wanted to make sure that I could answer any questions they might have, and most importantly, I didn’t want them to start questioning if their dad, who served in Afghanistan, died in vain.

I spoke to Lorna who works in the Families Team at Scotty’s and we decided to record our chat because we knew that some of the questions I had, many other people would probably have as well.

We ended up creating two short videos. One for parents and carers, and one specifically for the children and young people we support.

We made the decision to share the videos on social media, because we wanted them to be available for anyone that might benefit from seeing them.

We knew that going back to school was particularly hard for some of our members who are children of parents who served in Afghanistan, so we developed a letter that could be given to their teachers.

If the schools have all the information, they can help the child get the support they need. We received feedback from various families about the support we provided, which always means a lot to us.

One parent said: “Thank you. I feel out my depth with it all and a bit of an emotional wreck, so this helps massively.”

n It’s good that the children seem settled back into school now.

My own children, Kai, Brooke and Tilly are definitely benefitting from being back in a routine again.

It’s not just my kiddies who have gone back to school either, I have as well!

It’s been a long time since I picked up a textbook and wrote an essay, but I have just started my ‘Working in Childhood Bereavement Certificate’ which is a year long course aimed at anyone with experience in working with bereaved children and their families.

It offers a unique opportunity to link theory to practice.

Although I have had personal experience with bereavement, it will really help to learn about it. I’m doing the course with Mark, who works with me at Scotty’s.

We’re grateful to We Are Beyond for funding our places and I know it will help us to offer more support to bereaved Forces families in the future.

n We’ve got Scotty’s annual charity ball later this month, which I am really excited about.

I just want to say a huge thank you to all the businesses in this area who have helped us with donations and prizes for our auction.

The support from the people of West Norfolk is always incredible.

Thanks for being on our journey with us.

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