As part of our All Together project 24 teenagers enjoyed a weekend break at the Marrick Priory Outdoor Education Centre in Richmond, North Yorkshire.
The All Together deployment club is a two-year project supporting young people while their serving parents are deployed or due to deploy soon.
The teenagers bonded outdoors climbing the high ropes, conquering the leap of faith and trying their hand at archery and abseiling. The group also came together for the first group session from Little Troopers new Therapy Programme. Two therapists from The Owl Centre facilitated the session as the teens discussed the ups and downs of military life.
The weekend ended with a surprise visit from Little Troopers Ambassador, Thom Smith. Thom is a professional rugby player for Doncaster Knights. He grew up as a military child and is a presenter on the Little Troopers SQUAD podcast.
Ellen (15), comments: “At first I was really nervous because I didn’t know anyone but everyone has been really nice and it’s been a great opportunity to make new friends with other people who understand what you’re going through.”
Ratu (14), adds: “It’s been really fun. It’s good that people can talk about how they feel about having parents in the military.”
Louise, founder of our charity, explains: ““This is the first of our All Together residential weekends. We’ve loved meeting so many amazing young people from the Armed Forces community and the teens tell us they have really benefited from the weekend. They’ve all made new friendships and we hope they will keep in touch and remember this weekend forever.”
“Each year, thousands of military children have a parent, or in some cases both parents, deployed for months at a time. This can be really hard time for those left at home. Our All Together project brings these children together so they can benefit from talking to peers going through a similar experience.”
Our All Together project has been made possible thanks to generous donations from the Veterans Foundation, the Prince of Wales Charitable Fund, the Henry Sale Foundation, Greenwich Hospital and HDH Wills. In addition to running teen residential weekends, the project includes a series of online workshops for under 10s and adventure days out for 7–13-year-olds.