Virtually celebrating Armed Forces Week
Armed Forces Week, which takes place each June, is an opportunity to show support for the Armed Forces and provide a much-needed morale boost for the troops and their families. It also highlights the respect and gratitude we have for serving personnel, veterans, reservists, cadets, their families and Armed Forces charities such as SSAFA.
What did we do?
Amey has a rich tradition of employing ex Armed Forces personnel, and Armed Forces week is an initiative we regularly get behind to show our support for these employees. However, the impact of Covid-19 meant that Armed Forces Week 2020 would need to be very different from previous years. To ensure the week was still a success, we worked together with SSAFA to plan and deliver a series of innovative, but safe, activities and events.
Regional Big Brew Up events
We held five Virtual Big Brew Up events across the UK which were attended by more than 500 employees. Each event was hosted by a Senior Amey Manager and included presentations from a SSAFA representative and an Amey Guest Speaker who had a background in the military. There was also an opportunity to grab a cup of tea and virtually meet Amey colleagues.
Rachael Ferguson, Corporate Fundraising Manager, SSAFA, shared, “The Virtual Big Brew Up - just like the non-virtual version we have run for the past ten years - seeks to bring people together over a drink and a bite to eat whilst raising awareness of and money for the Armed Forces community, particularly for those veterans and families who are struggling with the hardships of lockdown, be it isolation, disability or financial difficulty. It is vitally important for our community to reach out and this is a brilliant way to bring people together.”
Support for SSAFA ‘Thirteen Bridges Challenge’
More than 25 Amey employees took part in the SSAFA “13 Bridges Challenge” walking 10 miles in their local area with the aim to take in local bridges and by walking to nearby war memorials and landmarks. Amey Chief Executive, Amanda Fisher, took part in the challenge as well as senior managers John Faulkner and Paul Jukes. The Amey team raised £1025 for SSAFA. This total included £455 raised by Nick Watkins who marched two miles each day carrying 46lb on his back!
What was the impact?
As well as raising money for a fantastic charity, our efforts across these events enabled like-minded employees to get together and share their experiences and for many it was the first time they had met. It is incredibly important that our employees feel supported at work.
In 2015 Amey committed to raising £250,000 over five years to support SSAFA’s mentoring programme, providing practical and personal support to those leaving the Services and struggling to make the transition back into civilian life. We were delighted to announce during Armed Forces Week 2020 that we had exceeded our target.
“As an ex-serviceman I was already aware of the amazing work that SSAFA does for those former service personnel and their families, and it was great to have that awareness spread more widely across the business. The virtual brew up was a great initiative, it might not be as convivial as a real cuppa and slice of cake but it did allow us to focus on the great work SSAFA does. I am incredibly proud of what Amey has achieved by smashing the £250k fund raising target, the ERS Gold is a well-earned achievement.” Richard Castell, Amey Defence