Another way to demonstrate your commitment to the Armed Forces community: support families separated by deployment

Another way to demonstrate your commitment to the Armed Forces community: support families separated by deployment

By Ed Hanna

Through the pledges you’ve made to the Armed Forces Covenant you show your commitment to our military families. One more way you can make a positive impact on the lives of Forces parents and their children is by donating to Reading Force.

“The idea of Reading Force is a simple one – to build a bridge of books between absent parents and the children they’ve left behind; to offer a point of contact, a shared experience, something to talk and laugh about together, an intimate experience that dissolves distance.” – Meg Rosoff, Carnegie Medal winning children’s author.

Reading Force brings Service families closer together through shared reading. It’s like a book club for the whole family and a way to learn and bond. It is available to ALL British military families, Army, Navy & Marines, and RAF, including Reservists and veterans.

All the challenges faced by military families are often underestimated; frequent moves of home and school, children having to say goodbye to friends and extended family, and the emotional strain of having a parent working in a war zone.

The charity encourages families to read a book together, at home with each other, or while a loved one is deployed or away on training. If separated, the book can be read and chatted about via Skype and Facetime. The whole family can get involved, as well as friends.

As well as a book, Reading Force also gives families a scrapbook to fill with thoughts, photographs and drawings about the story they’re sharing, and they can enter it into our scrapbook competitions. Talking about books and stories connects families who are separated, as well as providing bonding time when together at home – this supports wellbeing, builds resilience, and creates shared memories.

Founded by author, publisher, academic, mum of four, and soldier’s wife of over 30 years, Dr Alison Baverstock, Reading Force provides this initiative to Service families free of charge; relying on supporters and donators to continue to make a positive impact on the lives of so many Armed Forces children.

Think about all the magical reading experiences that shaped your childhood. Your generosity will help with purchasing books, printing and postage of scrapbooks, and organising author visits in schools and communities. You can choose from a one-off payment of £25, £50, £100, £250 or £500, or a regular monthly payment of £10, £25, £50, or £100.

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