We are delighted to award a £15,000 grant to Abberton Rural Training towards its Operation Rustic Recovery project.

Improving the mental health and wellbeing of soldiers and veterans is a priority for ABF The Soldiers’ Charity. Abberton Rural Training, based in Chelmsford, provides education, training and mental health support to disadvantaged and vulnerable people, including injured Armed Forces personnel.

For the past nine years, the charity’s Rustic Recovery projects have helped around 300 personnel annually, in partnership with the Army’s Personnel Recovery Centre, Colchester Garrison. The courses provide mental health therapy through green environment activities such as landscape gardening, land conservation and creating wildlife habitats.

Jacqui Stone, Chief Executive Officer, Abberton Rural Training, said:

“This grant from ABF The Soldiers’ Charity will make a huge difference to many Army personnel facing medical discharge or undergoing personnel recovery pending return to their regiments. We see huge progress after spending time with us in the green environment. What we provide gives the opportunity for people to feel supported, able to join with others going through similar challenges, build coping strategies and learn new skills. This project literally improves lives and saves lives, hugely improving wellbeing and confidence.”

Brigadier (Ret’d) Peter Monteith, Chief Operating Officer, ABF The Soldiers’ Charity, added:

“Horticulture and the green environment generate valuable therapeutic benefits for recovering soldiers and veterans with mental health conditions. Our charity already funds other specialist charities in this area, and we were only too happy to make this grant to Abberton Rural Training this year.”

Read about Abberton Rural Training on its website here.

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