Making the transition from a military to civillian life can be a difficult and challenging time for Forces Leavers. There are many things to consider, but some of the key areas are:
It is important to think about what you want to do long-term and to weigh up whether this is a realistic option. It is certainly a good thing to have a dream job or career in mind but it’s usually sensible to keep your options open and to explore a variety of possibilities. You might also want to consider taking extra training or qualifications. Adult training can be expensive, but ELCAS credits (the Enhanced Learning Credits Scheme, an initiative that promotes lifelong learning amongst members of the Armed Forces) can be used to fund a number of different courses for current and former military personnel. The amount of help you might qualify for will largely depend on the length of your service.
Finding somewhere suitable to live will be of paramount importance but what counts as suitable will vary depending on your personal circumstances. If you have a family, for example, this is likely to have a major impact on your choices. You might be flexible about where in the country you want to live (or might even consider settling abroad), but ensuring you have a support network of family and friends can also be important. You can access help and advice via the Joint Service Housing Advice Office (JSHAO).
If you are medically discharged, you will be entitled to a resettlement package, whether you are Wounded, Injured and Sick (WIS) or discharged on other medical grounds. Your care and any ongoing treatment, however, may revert to the NHS via the Defence Recovery Capability (DRC), so it’s important to make sure you are familiar with the process and know who your points of contact will be. Even if you are not medically discharged, you should still sign up for a GP and dentist as a matter of course.