Since 2004 The Westminster Collection has been proud partners with the Royal British Legion, and throughout that time collectors like you have raised a remarkable £1.25 MILLION for the organisation!
This is an incredible amount that could enable the RBL’s dedicated frontline advisors to help over 7,590 people in the Armed Forces community and their families get access to the help that they need.
To mark this milestone, earlier this year we had the pleasure of presenting the Royal British Legion with a cheque from collectors for the staggering amount.
We also had the pleasure of meeting Robert Benham, Regional Lead – Admiral Nursing – Hampshire, who told us all about the important work of the RBL Admiral Nurse Service.
And in today’s blog, we explain more about the specialist Admiral Nurse Service and share the story of Dorothy and Angus Weir…
What is the Admiral Nurses Service?
The Royal British Legion works in partnership with Dementia UK to provide Admiral Nurses – a specialist service helping the Armed Forces community and their families living with dementia.
RBL’s Admiral Nurses Service has been supporting families living with dementia since 2012, giving personalised and holistic support to the whole family. RBL Admiral Nurses give one-to-one support, expert guidance, and practical solutions to help the family to live well with their diagnosis and face the future with more confidence.
RBL nurses work in the community, supporting families through home visits and through telephone and video contact. Each family we support is under the care of a dedicated Admiral Nurse, who will support them throughout their time with the service.
Each nurse provides a range of support, advice, advocacy, and education to families, including:
- Identifying potential needs amongst carers (such as depression and anxiety) that are often pushed into the background and arrange for or provide appropriate support.
- Working with carers to build their confidence in their caring role and improve their mental wellbeing (for example reducing their feelings of loneliness and isolation… We support them to re-establish their relationship as a spouse, as well as supporting their role as a carer.
- Listening to families’ concerns, helping to identify practical solutions to reduce the fear and stress faced by carers.
- Explaining the reasoning behind advice given to the family by other professionals, helping to make complex information easily understandable during times of great difficulty.
- Advocating for families, liaising with other bodies (such as GPs and community mental health teams) to make sure all the necessary support is in place.
- Helping families prepare for end-of-life care or a move into a care home, and supporting them to transition and adjust to their new circumstances.
Each RBL Admiral Nurse supports approximately 45 families at any one time.
Dorothy and Angus Weir
Dorothy lives in Swansea with her husband of 49 years, Angus. Dorothy’s family is steeped in military history, going back five generations. She grew up with a father who served in the Second World War, and a grandfather who served too.
Angus served in the Army with the 15th 19th The Kings Road Hussars for around 10 years, with postings in Germany, France, Norway and Libya.
Sadly, Angus has several health problems including bipolar disorder, vascular dementia and Alzheimer’s.
Dorothy is his sole carer.
“Caring for Angus impacts my life massively,” says Dorothy. “His long-term memory is brilliant – he can talk about his time in the Army until the cows come home! But, he can’t tell you what happened yesterday.”
Last year, Dorothy was put in touch with the RBL’s Admiral Nurse service and since then they have provided her with practical advice, and emotional and psychological support.
Dorothy says: “When you become a carer for someone, that’s what identifies you. Even my children would describe me as ‘Dad’s carer’, so you lose some of who you are. The mental health team treated me as a carer, not as a wife, but Helen my Admiral Nurse focuses on me as me, as my own person.”
“She [Helen] talks to me about dementia, how it works, and has given me a lot of information I didn’t know.
“That helps me cope because I can understand what Angus is doing.
“We don’t just talk about Angus, we talk about crafting and our similar interests, which I don’t normally get to talk to about with anybody.
“I also talk to her about feeling lonely,” Dorothy adds. “I can have all the children here and still feel a bit lonely, and she understands that.
The funds raised by The Westminster Collection through sales of the Poppy Coins helps the Royal British Legion continue to provide its life-changing services like the Admiral Nurses.
Introducing the Official 2023 RBL Coin Range
For nearly 20 years, we’ve been proud to support the Royal British Legion, issuing coins and commemoratives in partnership of the organisation.
And we have just revealed this year’s, fully approved, one-year-only design…
By ordering today, you’ll be directly supporting the RBL, allowing the charity to continue its incredible work providing financial, social and life-long support for the Armed Forces community.
Thank you for helping raise £1.25m for the Royal British Legion.
For nearly 20 years, we’ve had the privilege of working in partnership with the Royal British Legion.
Each year we’ve created Remembrance and Poppy-themed coins and commemoratives to raise funds and awareness for the charity.
Through the sales of these coins and commemoratives, collectors have helped raise a remarkable £1.25 MILLION for the Royal British Legion!
We are extremely proud of this achievement, and hugely thankful to our collectors raised such an incredible amount.
In addition to raising funds for RBL over the years, we’ve also had the opportunity to find out more about their incredible work for the Armed Forces Community.
And earlier this month, when we presented RBL with a cheque for £1.25 million, we had the pleasure of meeting Robert Benham, Regional Lead – Admiral Nursing – Hampshire.
Delivered in partnership with Dementia UK, Admiral Nurses give one-to-one support and expert advice for people living with a diagnosis of dementia, their families and their carers. The effects of dementia can be devastating for the whole family, but Admiral Nurses help to ease the burden and reassure families that they are not alone.
Where do your donations go?
£1.25 million raised by The Westminster Collection for the Royal British Legion could enable it’s dedicated frontline advisors to help over 7,590 people in the Armed Forces community and their families get access to the help that they need.
Every day, RBL Case Officers provide practical and emotional one-to-one support, helping Serving and ex-Serving personnel, and their families, to get the help they deserve. The needs of the Armed Forces community are becoming more complex and can include a wide range of issues such as employment, finances, or housing; RBL Case Officers are ready to help and advise whatever the issue.
The funds raised by The Westminster Collection can help people like Lawrence.
Following seven years in the Army, Lawrence was medically discharged after injuring his spine whilst weightlifting.
After an exemplary military career Lawrence found himself struggling to adapt to civilian life.
To help Lawrence get the support he needed his fiancée Danielle advised him to get in touch with the Royal British Legion.
He was contacted by one of the RBL’s local Case Officers, Paul James, who was able to get Lawrence the mental health support he needed.
In December 2020, when Lawrence was unable to work due to Covid-19, his debt suddenly spiralled by almost 400%. But the RBL’s Benefits, Debt and Money Advice team (BDMA) were able to help.
Lawrence said: “They [the RBL] have helped me sort out both my mental health and my financial health. I’m debt-free and looking forward to starting a new career, I cannot thank them enough.”
To find out more about the Royal British Legion, click here.
What’s next for our partnership?
We’re excited to see our longstanding partnership with the Royal British Legion continue later this year when we’ll be launching the latest additions to our Official RBL Poppy coins and commemoratives range.
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In support of the Royal British Legion, each year we produce a range of limited edition coins for Remembrance.
However when I first saw this release, I could hardly believe it was a legal tender coin.
You see, it uses a special minting technique that makes the poppy three dimensional! A feat that has to be seen to be believed…
So in my latest unboxing video I wanted to show you why this coin is nothing short of a three-dimensional piece of art.
But with ONLY 500 available WORLDWIDE, you’ll have to be quick if you want to make it the centrepiece of your collection.