Back on dry land - Naval service leavers focus on new horizons

Back on dry land - Naval service leavers focus on new horizons

Leaving the Royal Navy or Royal Marines and re-entering the civilian world after a career in the military can be a daunting process for many.

“Leaving the Royal Navy or Royal Marines and re-entering the civilian world after a career in the military can be a daunting process for many.”

The Royal Navy and Royal Marines Charity recognises the unique challenges that Naval Service veterans face once they hang up their uniforms for good. For the past five years, the RNRMC has allocated over £300,000 to help support the important work undertaken by the Regular Forces Employment Association (RFEA), specialists in bridging the gap between military life and civilian employment.

Founded in 1885, the RFEA operates across the whole of the UK, assisting working-age veterans with the transition back to civilian life by providing the skills, tools and self confidence necessary to successfully re-enter the civilian work force. In 2018 our support enabled the RFEA to guide 720 former Royal Navy and Royal Marines personnel with the next stage of their lives.

Here is the story of just one of them. Kenneth Nesbit had a Naval career spanning 22 years and left the Service in 1997. He registered with the RFEA early in 2018 after being made redundant six months beforehand. When he first met his RFEA Employment Advisor Annette, Kenneth was at a very low ebb: “All the candidates I was competing with to try and secure a new job seemed to have the upper hand. I was losing money fast, despite tightening my budget. I also knew that the longer I was out of work, the more detrimental it would become for my mental health.”

Annette worked with Kenneth to make his CV stand out and conducted a number of practice interviews. She reviewed Kenneth’s applications and made suggestions as how he could improve them. Within a very short period, Kenneth landed his dream role – fittingly as an Employment Coach supporting others back into the workplace: “It was exactly what I wanted, in exactly the skill set areas I possess. I now work within a small team of extremely high-functioning, witty, intelligent, and supportive colleagues. We are given almost complete autonomy to develop our own practices as individuals and as a team, and I could not be happier.

Lesley McIlroy, Business Assurance Manager at Kenneth’s new employer, Brag Enterprises, is equally pleased by his appointment. “Kenneth was one of eight people interviewed for the role and was the unanimous choice of the interview panel”, she says. “As an ex-servicemen he has a tremendous attention to detail and a genuine interest in the well-being of the people he is working with. Another of Kenneth’s strengths, which I believe stems from his Royal Navy background, is his unflappable nature! All in all, he is the perfect fit for us.”

Please call the central support team of the regular forces employment association on 0121 262 3058 for support and guidance if you are transitioning to the civilian work place. RFEA will require proof of service.

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